Offseason news wrap: Football recruiting, NBA draft and links

This is the offseason news wrap, an occasional feature with Maryland-centric items you might have missed. 

Damian Prince.
Damian Prince.

>> Rivals recently released its updated top 100 rankings for the class of 2014, and three Maryland targets made substantial leaps. Offensive lineman Damian Prince (Bishop McNamara) rose to No. 10 and ranks third nationally at his position.

Conerback Jalen Tabor (20th overall) of Friendship Collegiate Academy, from which the Terrapins scored OL Derwin Gray and LB Yannick Ngakoue for their class of 2013, and defensive end Jesse Aniebonam (94th overall) also cracked the rankings. Aniebonam visited Maryland for the spring game and took another unofficial visit to College Park recently.

Some other football names to keep an eye on:

St. John’s defensive back Omar Truitt is scheduled to visit on Tuesday, a source confirmed. Truitt, who comes from NFL bloodlines, doesn’t hold a Maryland offer yet, but according to 247sports.com has interest from the likes of Pittsburgh, Mississippi State and Penn State.

Gilman CB Troy Vincent Jr., per several reports, will visit on Friday with his parents. Vincent, per 247sports, holds 14 FBS offers, all from BCS schools.

And per The Post’s Eric Detweiler, Friendly cornerback Alameen Murphy has picked up an offer from Maryland. The Terps are in the running along with a number of schools across the nation.

It was another relatively quiet weekend at Gossett Team House. No commitments but several unofficial visitors. Expect things to pick up soon, especially once Maryland starts hosting its camps and getting more players on campus.

>> Speaking of the actual football team — and not its future — the locker room at Gossett underwent a substantial renovation, funded by a donor group led by former quarterback Rich Novak and his wife Laura. The renovation, per a press release, “will feature brand new oak lockers, new custom carpet, custom lighting, and specially designed furniture.”

It’s the third major overhaul for the football program, after receiving new FieldTurf at Byrd Stadium before last season and a renovated performance center in Gossett in 2011.

All returning players are scheduled to report back to campus after Memorial Day. The incoming freshmen arrive in early June.

>> Two Alex Len-related things. First, here’s colleague Michael Lee on Len:

Despite the unforeseen setback, Len remains confident in his decision to have surgery — and his future prospects in the NBA.

“I think I have the biggest upside in this draft with the big guys,” said Len, still a few weeks shy of his 20th birthday. “I think, maybe 10 years from now, I’ll be the best player out of this draft.”

Second, here’s Len doing a 12-minute interview with DraftExpress. Nothing earth-shattering here, but Len does confirm he won’t play with the Ukrainian national team this summer. Given the unclear and shaky circumstances under which he left his home country, returning this soon didn’t seem likely anyway.

>> Not sure when this happened, but former Maryland forward James Padgett signed with Rize Management, the same agency that represents former Terps D.J. Strawberry, Ekene Ibekwe and Sean Mosley, among others.

Padgett’s new agent, Scott Nichols, said briefly via phone that Padgett is still working out around Maryland, gearing up for overseas tryouts, dates and times still to be determined. International leagues are wrapping up playoffs now, so Nichols said not much can happen until that’s all done. He expects Padgett to leave the United States — for either Europe or Asia, wherever he latches on — in mid-to-late August.

Also, Padgett graduated yesterday.

>> This is somewhat old news, but Tennessee has ratcheted up its interest in former Memphis guard Antonio Barton, an individual with knowledge confirmed. Maryland remains squarely in the mix for Barton’s services, which would help ease the transition for incoming freshman Roddy Peters and allow Seth Allen to play more off the ball.

>> Per the Baltimore Sun, Maryland won’t play its scheduled game against Virginia Tech in 2014 at M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore. Obviously, this is not shocking. The Terps officially leave the ACC next summer for the Big Ten, so keeping a nonconference game like this probably wasn’t going to happen.

>> In case you missed it, here are some recent links from the blog:

ACC’s motion to dismiss Maryland lawsuit scheduled for hearing this Thursday

Documents from the motion

Measuring up football salaries in the Big Ten

Jimmy Reed, Charlie White earn all-ACC honors

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 20, 2013