Posted by Jeff Borzello
Mark Turgeon just upped the ante in the nation’s capital.
As Gary Parrish confirmed on Tuesday, Kansas State associate head coach Dalonte Hill has accepted an offer to join Turgeon’s staff at Maryland.
Hill will join Texas A&M associate head coach Scott Spinelli and Maryland assistant coach Bino Ranson on the new Terrapins’ staff.
As most people know, Hill helped transform Kansas State into a national power, poaching players from the DC Assault AAU program where he used to play and coach, and bringing them into the Midwest. He started with Michael Beasley, getting him to commit to Charlotte when Hill was an assistant there and then wooing him to Manhattan, Kan. when Hill got a job there.
Hill did more than that at Kansas State, though. He brought Wally Judge and Rodney McGruder from D.C., courted New Yorker Curtis Kelly and picked up Jacob Pullen from Chicago. He is one of the best recruiters in the country – and he immediately makes Maryland a force to be reckoned with on the Beltway recruiting scene.
Combine him with Ranson, who is to Baltimore what Hill is to D.C., and the DMV might be locked up for several years.
As Baltimore native – and Missouri guard – Kim English tweeted, “With Dalonte Hill and Bino Ranso[n] both at Maryland, all other schools might as well stop recruiting the Baltimore and DC area.”
The reaction from different people in the area has already begun.
“Hill will have a huge impact,” said Jay Watford, who runs a scouting service in the D.C./Maryland/Virginia area. “He has great connections to several of the big-time AAU programs and even more personal relationships with high school coaches in the area, as well as influential basketball people in the DMV. Many people like an respect him.”
AAU and high school coaches aren’t underestimating the hire, either.
“Great hire!,” Team Takeover (D.C.) head coach Keith Stevens said. “I think he will make a major impact on the Maryland program.”
“The hiring of Dalonte Hill will have a major impact on recruiting for Maryland basketball,” Kevin Jones, head coach at St. Andrew’s Episcopal in Potomac, Md., added. “I think Maryland will start to attract and sign local talent they have been unable to in the past.”
For the past several years, Gary Williams was unable to keep the best talent in the Baltimore/D.C. area at home. The two high-profile ones were Carmelo Anthony and Rudy Gay, who left the state to attend Syracuse and Connecticut, respectively.
Many people have said that Williams shied away from getting involved with the AAU teams in the area. D.C. Assault and Team Takeover kids have left to go to Duke, Rutgers and many others in the last year.
“He is able to recruit DC Assault effectively,” Watford said of Hill. “That was a struggle for Gary Williams. [Hill] is very well connected with both power teams in the area.”
Jones summed up the hire.
“Hill has strong connections to AAU coaches in the D.C. area,” he said. “And he was a former All-Met player at Newport School, so he knows the area. This hire by Turgeon shows he plans to compete at a national level.”
The questions about Turgeon adapting to the area have now been answered – get ready for plenty of recruiting wars.