We’re heading back to Maryland to meet a kid who is looking to redeem himself after a tragic freshman season that saw him spending a lot of his time deep on the pine.
2010-11 STATS: 1.3 PPG, 1.3 RPG, 0.5 APG (.350/.300/.000)
Like many in Gary Williams’ 2010 freshmen class, there were high expectations on Mychal Parker to come in and contribute quickly. In fact, I would argue that Parker was the centerpiece, i.e. the most likely to succeed of the six-man class.
However, while players like Pe’Shon Howard and Terrell Stoglin would play key roles for the 2010-201l Terrapins, Parker was relegated to a role player. He played only 80 minutes of basketball all season, failing to play in 20 games total.
So what went wrong?
It’s hard to say, but from what I heard, a lot it had to do with lack of effort, both in practice and on defense. There are a lot of things Gary Williams will let slide, but lack of effort is not one of them.
Parker also has a reputation as a guy who will zone out mid-game if he’s not getting the ball in his hands. Another thing I’m assuming Williams isn’t in to.
However, Williams is gone and Mark Turgeon is the man now. The slate is wiped clean. Can Parker put his freshman season mess behind him and become a legit wing in this league?
Clearly you can tell from the 75th place ranking on this list, I don’t believe he’ll do it, at least this year, but let’s dig deeper.
I think he’s certainly talented enough. He’s listed as a shooting guard, but he plays more like a small forward. In fact, at 6-5, 200 pounds, he’s built like one. He’s not a threat from three though, but he is dangerous with the ball in his hands. He can dribble like a point guard and can get to the paint with a wicked crossover. He can finish either at (or over) the basket or pull up for a sweet mid-range jumper.
Those are the things he can do.
Looking ahead, Parker should get more time. One year of learning and living with the lumps of a rough rookie season should toughen him up. I also think it will help that Maryland’s point guard, Terrell Stoglin, will be a year older too.
A great point guard will make his teammates better, by setting them up for what they do best. I’m not saying Stoglin is a great point guard, but he’s pretty damn good and he’ll become more of a distributor in his sophomore season.
Overall, Maryland will need a lot more guys to contribute now that Jordan Williams is playing pro ball in New Jersey. The Terrapins will probably end up going small by starting three guards (Terell Stoglin, Pe’Shon Howard and Sean Mosley). I think incoming freshman Nick Faust will steal some minutes as a backup guard, but I think Parker could see some heavy minutes at the three-spot coming off the pine again.
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