Offseason news wrap: Vertrail Vaughns picks North Texas

The occasional offseason feature recapping Maryland news you might have missed, not big enough for solo blogs but certainly good enough for bulleted lists. 

>> George Mason transfer Vertrail Vaughns committed to North Texas Wednesday afternoon. Vaughns, a career 38.5-percent three-point shooter who averaged 5.0 points per game for the Patriots last season, will be eligible immediately per NCAA graduate student transfer rules.

Vaughns reportedly visited Maryland earlier this week, though it was hard to see the 6-foot-2, 195-pound guard fitting anywhere into Coach Mark Turgeon’s rotation, except as a one-year shooting rental off the bench, similar to the role Logan Aronhalt served last season. Remember, Aronhalt left Albany shooting just 35.3 percent from three-point range in three college seasons, so it’s certainly possible to ratchet up that percentage by focusing almost exclusively on shooting.

Regardless, with Vaughns off the board — whether Maryland’s interest was seriously mutual is unknown — the Terps can turn their full attention to Memphis guard Antonio Barton, who probably was the best transfer fit anyway. Former Rutgers guard Eli Carter picked Florida over the Terps this week too.

>> Per Coach Randy Edsall, former Terps tight end Devonte Campbell joined the Atlanta Falcons. Campbell caught just three passes last season for 37 yards and one touchdown.

>> Two stories of interest from today’s WaPo:

First, colleague Kent Babb explores the intertwined paths of ACC commissioner John Swofford and Big Ten commissioner Jim Delany, old classmates and old rivals.

Second, local high school coaches and top football prospects sound off on the NCAA’s proposed recruiting rule changes, which would deregulate all forms of communication.

>> Preps reporter Roman Stubbs caught up with 2015 Gaithersburg linebacker Kamonte Carter, who says he holds offers from Maryland, North Carolina State, West Virginia and Penn State, among others. He’s just a sophomore, but Carter can also play running back, slot receiver or quarterback. Neither Rivals nor 247sports.com have much on him.

>> A.J. Francis is blowing up. Saturday, he signed with the Miami Dolphins and proposed to his girlfriend in a one-hour span. Wednesday, he posted a three-minute video of friends and family singing happy birthday, then cheering as Francis whipped out his Dolphins hat and dropped to one knee.

Thursday, that video had over 40,000 views thanks to posts on Deadspin and CBS Sports.

(Video warning: NSFW language at the end)

>> I caught up with Gilman football coach Biff Poggi for the above-mentioned story. He said quarterback Shane Cockerille, a 2013 Maryland signee, is still helping recruit teammates Troy Vincent Jr. and Melvin Keihn to College Park.

Keihn is a three-star defensive end according to 247sports.com with offers from eight ACC schools, among others. Vincent Jr., son of longtime NFL cornerback Troy Vincent Sr., is also a three-star prospect with 14 FBS offers, per 247sports.com. Both were regulars at Byrd Stadium last season, if only because Cockerille loaded teammates into his car and drove south for home games.

>> Also caught up with Dave Madaras, father of rising Maryland sophomore Mike and Good Counsel prospect Sam, both offensive linemen. Sam’s recruitment has opened slower than his older brother’s, but he’s still taking unofficial visits to Georgia Tech, Rutgers, Pittsburgh, West Virginia and North Carolina State, among others. Keep an eye on the class of 2014 guard, especially if his stock accelerates.

>> Class of 2014 point guard Tre Campbell keeps earning high-major offers, picking up nods from Pittsburgh, Xavier and Georgetown this week. Maryland offered the St. John’s junior April 22. 

“It feels great to get an offer from Maryland, and it was kind of unexpected,” Campbell told colleague Brandon Parker. “[Turgeon] said he likes me at the one and two position and talked about playing with [O'Connell junior guard and Maryland commit] Melo [Trimble], how our games are different and how we could play well together.”

 

Alex Prewitt covers the Washington Capitals. Follow him on Twitter @alex_prewitt or email him at alex.prewitt@washpost.com.
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Alex Prewitt · May 1, 2013