After missing out on the Harrison twins, Maryland found their next great point guard prospect right down the street from campus. Suitland High School senior point guard Roddy Peters has committed to play basketball at the University of Maryland next year, according to multiple reports.
Recognized as one of the best players in the country, the 6'4" 180 lbs. Peters chose Maryland over offers from UCLA, Kansas, Georgetown, Rutgers and others. After losing a highly publicized recruiting battle for consesnsus top five players Aaron and Andrew Harrison earlier this month, the signing of Peters is a great rebound for the Terps.
Peters, a four-star prospect ranked in the Top 50 nationally, will join the Maryland Class of 2013 that will include another freshman big man Damonte Dodd, Michigan transfer Evan Smotrycz, and possibly Xavier transfer Dez Wells. Wells has applied for a waiver to the traditional transfer rules and hopes to play this year, though that application is still being worked through by the NCAA.
With just one pure point guard on the Terps roster, Peters fills a position of need for Maryland. Peters also shows a reinforced commitment to recruiting that Maryland had not always shown over the last decade. Many reports cite the relationship between Maryland assistant coach Dalonte Hill and Peters' AAU team, DC Assault. Hill is a former coach with the Assault and still has many ties to the amateur team.
Perhaps just as important in Peters recruitment was geography. The young point guard from Prince Georges County always maintained that he was a lifelong Terp fan, and that he wanted to stay close to home for college.
His commitment could mean a lot for the Terps on the court. CBS Sports columnist Jeff Goodman said that with Peters, the 2013-2014 Terps could have the look of a Final Four squad, especially if all the current pieces stay with the team. Some speculation exists that should sophomore big man Alex Len play well this year, he may depart the program early for the NBA draft. However, if Len stays, the current crop of freshmen continue to develop, and with the addition of Peters, next year's Maryland basketball team will face expectations that have not been present for the better part of a decade.
The most important takeaway from Peters' commitment is that the Terps will now fight to keep valuable local kids in-state, and by beating UCLA, Kansas, and Georgetown, the new coaching staff has shown it can close the deal.