With Mark Turgeon Re-Signed, Here's Where Maryland Stands for the 2021-22 Season

With Mark Turgeon re-signed, here's where Maryland stands originally appeared on NBC Sports Washington

Whether you agree with the extension for Mark Turgeon until the end of the 2025-26 season or not, a move had to be made by Maryland. Sitting idle and letting a head coach enter a lame-duck season at the Power 5 level is not a reasonable option. Recruits don't want to head to a program that might force them to look elsewhere if the coach and team part ways after their freshman season. 

The Terrapins chose to extend rather than start over. Turgeon is now locked in for the long-term and if you look at the beginning of the next chapter in the Turgeon era, it's off to a strong start. 

Just prior to the announcement of Turgeon's extension, he arguably got the two biggest transfer commitments of his tenure. Senior Darryl Morsell, while also testing the NBA waters and entering the transfer portal, also left the door open to return to College Park. 

An extension, two marquee transfers and a chance your fifth-year leader returns for his additional "Covid year." That's a pretty good stretch for Turgeon, especially after his tenure with the Terps. 

The two transfers -- Fatts Russell and Qudus Wahab -- are huge. Both address the two biggest issues with the Terrapins roster during the 2020-21 season: point guard (Russell) and a formidable big-man (Wahab). Presuming most of the roster stays put from now until August, those are extremely notable additions to a team that made the Second Round of the NCAA Tournament. Additions that make the assertion that Maryland is a top-five team for next year not too outlandish. 

It makes it all the sweeter that Wahab was swiped away from the local competition Georgetown. 

So now, what's next? Really not much for Turgeon and company for next season. 

For now, the roster is set. All 13 scholarships are accounted for when adding in the two new high school commits Julian Reese and Ike Cornish who already signed their letters of intent.

Much can change from now and until June when most of the transfer requests are wrapped up. There's also the anticipation that Aaron Wiggins and Eric Ayala will test the NBA Draft waters. It should be fair to assume that at least one will stay. If that happens then another spot will be available for a recruit or another transfer. But so far, no one -- aside from potentially Morsell -- will play on another college team next season. 

Fortunately, Maryland can have the defending Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year come back and not count against the scholarship limit. If a player is playing their fifth year of eligibility on their original team, it does not count as one of the 13. The same will be the case for any other player on the 2020-21 roster later down the line.

So for the next couple months, Turgeon can focus on future recruiting classes for the remainder of this offseason in-between practices, workouts and keeping tabs on Morsell's status. Or, he can take an overdue break - either way he's in a good spot for next year.  

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