Postgame notes from the Maryland basketball team’s 71-38 win over Monmouth.
>> As Maryland Coach Mark Turgeon emptied his bench throughout the first half Wednesday night, searching for some semblance of productivity and consistency that gave him more turnovers than anything else, Jake Layman remained on the bench, his white warm-up jersey still donned.
Layman was perfectly healthy, rendering folks confused as to why even junior John Auslander was getting time off the bench instead of the freshman swingman. Turns out, there was no confusion on Turgeon’s end. Layman simply just didn’t get things done this week.
“Jake did not take care of his academics,” Turgeon said. “Simple as that. He didn’t take care of his academics so he had to be in study hall instead of coming to practice Monday, and when I left on Saturday, I said okay it’s 4 o’clock, you guys have until Monday at 3 o’clock to get everything done, and he didn’t get it done.”
Layman wound up seeing significant minutes against Monmouth after sitting the entire first half, playing 13 minutes off the bench. He finished with three points on 1 of 4 shooting with two rebounds, one assist, one turnover and one steal.
Whether this academic situation becomes a lingering concern remains to be seen, but given that Turgeon played Layman for the majority of the second half should indicate that he’ll be fine moving forward.
“He’s lucky he played,” Turgeon said.
>> As noted above, with Layman effectively out of the first-half rotation and Maryland’s post players otherwise not producing as necessary, Turgeon turned to Auslander for early minutes.
Typically the 11th man in the rotation, Auslander appeared with 4:48 left in the first half for Len, giving the Terps a four-guard lineup with Pe’Shon Howard, Logan Aronhalt, Nick Faust and Dez Wells. Auslander played for less than two minutes, getting subbed out with 3:24 left, but stuck a nice backdoor layup off a nifty bounce pass from Howard.
“Big guys weren’t playing worth anything,” Turgeon said. “Could have started one guy. Dez Wells was the only guy playing, but you’ve got to play five. Halftime I asked who was starting. Said Dez was the only one playing, after that I had no idea.”
Auslander’s seven total minutes were as many as he’s had in the past two games combined, and just two fewer than his previous season total.
>> Maybe all those summer hours spent shooting free throws paid off for James Padgett. He was 3 for 3 at the line on Wednesday night, and continues to provide solid starting minutes for the Terps, especially with Shaquille Cleare and Charles Mitchell still fluctuating with freshmen inconsistency.
Padgett’s averaging just 19.5 minutes per game this season, fewest among the starters and even fewer than Seth Allen, but he’s shooting .651 from the field, almost never attempting a shot from beyond five feet. In that way, Padgett will prove an asset during ACC play.
He’s been a rock of consistency who can absorb contact better than any post player right now, even though others have perhaps expected his playing time to dwindle with Cleare and Mitchell coming along. That could very well happen down the line, but for now Padgett’s providing those solid minutes.
>> In case you missed it, 2014 G Romelo Trimble announced his verbal commitment to Maryland early this morning before his Bishop O’Connell team boarded a plane to Kentucky for the Hilton Garden Inn Classic.
Colleague Brandon Parker has the story on Trimble pledging to his “dream school.” He had made his decision after the Terps offered him a scholarship during a late-August visit to College Park.
According to Trimble, Turgeon has spoken about using him and 2013 guard Roddy Peters interchangeably in the backcourt.