Feb 4, 2014; Chapel Hill, NC, USA; North Carolina Tar Heels forward Joel James (42) and Maryland Terrapins forward Charles Mitchell (0) fight for the ball in the first half at Dean E. Smith Student Activities Center. Mandatory Credit: Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

Why The Return Of Chuck Is So Important


 

Recently, reports surfaced that the final uncertainty in the transfer department for the Maryland Terrapins, Charles Mitchell, would be returning to school next season. There was rampant speculation last month that Mitchell would be joining the five other players who opted to take their services elsewhere than the university this off season. Not so, anymore, and the Terps should be thanking the stars in that regard.

Charles Mitchell was the team’s best rebounder hands down, and if Maryland wanted to remain a competitive team in the tough Big Ten, they were going to need his services.  Mitchell gives Maryland an edge in almost every game because of his nose for offensive rebounds; that’s something you incorporate into your strategy, not seek to remove from it. Consider this: since 1997, only three other players have had a better career rebounding percentage in the ACC. That’s not a fluke; those are raw numbers showing how dominant he is.

Mitchell, for all his defensive lumps, isn’t nearly as bad as he’s made out to be on that end (once you get past his physical limitations). On the contrary, he’s a hard worker whom you never really have to worry about whether or not he’s going to provide something every game. If he were ever capable of staying out of foul trouble,  Mitchell would be a menace for most teams.

Chuck is also an effective post scorer. In terms of efficiency, he’s pretty high up there. When you can go into the post and come away with points 50 percent of the time, you kind of have to take it. That’s what Chuck Mitchell provides, and I’m not sure anyone else on the roster could do that. Smotrycz is able (to an extent) but lacks the athleticism when faced against longer, quicker big men. Chuck doesn’t have that problem because of an already relatively polished post game not predicated on being bigger than anyone.

And Charles Mitchell’s biggest fault, his foul rate, may not be a major issue this year. Maryland lost one underperforming big man (Shaq Cleare) and replaced him with three players who are unknown entities but have one thing: potential. With Dodd, Cekovsky, and Reed,  Mitchell can play as aggressive as he wants all game long. If he fouls out, ideally the Terps have a lot of backup plans.

Mitchell is likely going to get the starting nod next year, and for good reason. Considering how hard he works in the off season and how big men are projects, the Terps could be in store for a very strong season from Chuck. That’s something to look forward to this offseason.

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