Five-Star PG recruit Roddy Peters took an unofficial visit to the University of Maryland campus yesterday to visit with Mark Turgeon and staff as Peters continues to work on making a decision as to his college destination.
The biggest difference between yesterday and the prior trips Peters has made to College Park was that he was accompanied by his mother. In following recruiting intensely for the past seven years I have come to the conclusion that for a highly rated local prospect such as Peters, winning over the parents can go a long way to securing a commitment.
While SEC football, I am an alumnus of the University of South Carolina where I interned in media relations for a year and a half, and ACC basketball aren’t the same thing this is a parallel that transcends sports and conferences. See Marcus Lattimore and Jadeveon Clowney for example. Both players were highly touted in state Five-Star recruits who ultimately decided to stay home and attempt to lead the flagship school of the state to the top of the mountain for the first time over a bevy of committable offers from college football blue bloods.
Steve Spurrier built up such a rapport with Lattimore and Clowney’s parents that in the end that helped push South Carolina over the top. If all Turgeon has to do to lock up Peters commitment is something along the lines of doing the cha-cha slide with his mother, like Spurrier did while recruiting Lattimore, then crank up the jams and get to it. The fact of the matter is securing a level of comfort with the parents of a recruit can go a long way towards landing a commitment.
While Peters committing to Maryland would be a big deal, he wouldn’t have to carry that burden of bringing a program to the top of the mountain for the first time as those two previous examples do. Maryland basketball has a proven track record on a regional and national level. Mark Turgeon knows that adding a talent like Peters would make it more likely that the Terps can get to the top of that mountain again sooner rather than later.
What did Peters do on his unofficial visit? Honestly, it was the standard visit from what I’ve seen. Peters and his family met with the coaching staff and discussed what his role would be with the program. They met with academic advisers and took a tour of the campus; that College Park has just as much to offer Peters in the classroom as it does on the hardwood is a major selling point for UMD. Peters also met with the Terps athletic trainers as well, and spent some time with current players, and fan favorites, Nick Faust and Pe’Shon Howard of the Maryland basketball team.
“The coaches talked a lot about basketball, but also about academics,” said Peters. “We met with the academic adviser, met with the athletic trainers. We took a tour of the campus, and it’s beautiful. As far as basketball, the staff talked a lot about how they would use me in their system. They know I am a point guard, and I am good with the ball in my hands. They’re not putting a lot of pressure on me, but at the same time, they want me to commit.” This quote was taken from TerrapinTimes.com, Maryland’s Rivals.com affiliate. Peters seems to have enjoyed himself on his unofficial visit and, as if it wasn’t pounded home before, came away knowing he is one of Maryland’s top targets in this recruiting cycle.
The topic of the Harrison twins, as it so often does when you talk about Maryland basketball, was brought up to Peters by TerrapinTimes.com and he had the following response.
“I know all about them, and the Maryland staff has been upfront in talking to me about them,” said Peters. “Coach Turgeon said he likes to run a three-guard offense, and what they do will play a small part in my decision.”
As I noted yesterday Peters is not scared of the potential competition with the twins who two of the top five players in the class of 2013. Taking off my unbiased media hat and replacing it with the life-long Terrapins fan hat I also own I can say the thought of a three-guard backcourt made up of all Five-Star recruits sounds like a dream come true. It is far from a lock to happen but the fact that it wouldn’t keep Peters from committing to Maryland is very positive. You want basketball players on your roster who aren’t afraid of competition.
Peters is still planning on taking some official visits to UCLA, Xavier University and potentially Georgetown. He also mentioned how he wanted to try and have a decision made prior to the beginning of his senior season at Suitland High but would stretch it out till the spring if he felt it was necessary. While anything can happen on an official visit I am firm in my stance that Roddy Peters will eventually be a Maryland Terrapin. Here is to hoping that he simply wants a free trip to Los Angeles and Mama Peters wants to watch her son play college basketball right up the road.