Terps like leadership skills of Santa Rita’s star point guard
Santa Rita High School junior point guard Terrell Stoglin has led his team to three straight state championship games.
The Atlantic Coast Conference is a far cry from Arizona’s 4A Division II high school classification, but it is those winning ways that convinced Maryland Terrapins coach Gary Williams that Stoglin has the leadership ability to succeed in one of college basketball’s most competitive leagues.
“That’s all that they kept ringing in my ear, ‘We won the 2002 national championship and we’re hoping you’re the guy to take us back to the Final Four,’ ” said Stoglin, who gave Williams and Maryland an oral commitment for the class of 2010 on Wednesday night.
Maryland has been recruiting Stoglin since his sophomore season, but got an up-close and personal look at him when the Eagles played in a prestigious preseason tournament in Washington, D.C., to start the 2008-09 season.
Stoglin said it is no accident he picked a school that will have a vacancy at point guard when he is a freshman.
“Their guards graduate next year and I want to play as a freshman,” Stoglin said. “They said they see me as having every opportunity to start as a freshman.”
A lifelong University of Arizona fan, Stoglin admitted he’s curious to see who the next coach in Tucson will be. He said there “is always a possibility” he could change his commitment to UA before he signs a letter of intent. But he said he is very much committed to playing for Maryland at this point, picking the Terrapins over offers from Texas A&M, San Diego, Georgia Tech and others.
Stoglin, who averaged 27.8 points per game this past season, has been his best when going against the best competition in national tournaments.
As a sophomore, he scored 35 points in a San Diego tournament while being guarded by current USC freshman star DeMar DeRozan.
This past winter, he scored 30 while being guarded by Abdul Gaddy, a former University of Arizona recruit who started in this week’s McDonald’s high school All-American game and will play at Washington next year.
“They told me they liked that I was a floor general, they liked my leadership,” said Stoglin, who is relied on heavily at Santa Rita to be a scorer, leading many to overlook his passing skills. “I think a lot of people here in Tucson forget I’m a pass-first guy. That’s all I played – point guard – last summer on my AAU teams and that’s what Maryland said they liked.”
And while Stoglin, a two time Tucson Citizen player of the year, is one of the state’s best passers, he’s not exactly inept in the scoring department.
Heading into his senior season, he is 953 points from the state record of 3,002 set by former Phoenix Shadow Mountain High and UA star Mike Bibby. If he plays 30 games next year, he would need to average 31.8 points per game to set the mark.
Santa Rita coach Jim Ferguson said Stoglin could have averaged at least that much this past season if he wanted to, or if the Eagles weren’t benching starters in the fourth quarter of several blowout victories.
Stoglin said the decision to commit to a school on the other side of the country was a tough one, but one he, his coaches and parents were comfortable with.
He said the biggest advisers in the process were his parents, Joe and Rose Stoglin, Ferguson and AAU coach Brian Peabody, who is also the Ironwood Ridge boys basketball coach.
With a year left, Santa Rita’s Terrell Stoglin is within striking distance of the Arizona career scoring record.
All classes record
> 3,002 – Mike Bibby (1992-96, Phoenix Shadow Mountain)
Class 4A record
> 2,535 – Chuck Overton (1988-92, Cholla)
> 2,049* (2006-present, Santa Rita)
* Through junior year. Stoglin will need to average 31.8 points through 30 games for state record, 16.2 points for Class 4A record.