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4 stats that put Stone's stellar freshman season in perspective


4 stats that put Stone's stellar freshman season in perspective

Diamond Stone is having a terrific freshman season for Maryland, especially on the offensive end of the floor.

Courtesy of friend of the site Mike Lynch of, we are able to quantify it. Of course watching film of Stone helps to draw these conclusions, but now the numbers drive the point home.

Take a look at four statistics that show how impressive Stone has been.

1) For a freshman center or center/power forward in the last 20 years, only one player has shot a higher percentage from the free-throw line than Stone (80 percent) after taking at least 100 attempts.

Keith Waleskowski of Dayton in 2000-01 is the only player to have shot a higher percentage in that group.

Stone’s mark from the line is important for two reasons:

  • Firstly, free-throw percentage is a good indication to scouts to reveal whether or not a player has potential as a stretch-four or stretch-five option at the next level. A good free-throw percentage means a player has solid touch and that can translate to other parts of a player’s offensive game

  • Secondly, his ability to hit free throws has been vitally important to Maryland especially in the second halves of games. At the college level, he is a talented low-post scorer who sometimes can only be stopped by the opposition fouling. Were he a 50-percent free-throw shooter, that would make Maryland more hesitant to go to him because fouling would be the best defense. Knocking free throws down at an 80-percent clip makes him that much more dangerous.

2) For a freshman at any position since 2009-10 who has played at least 500 minutes and had a usage percentage of at least 25, Stone has the sixth-best offensive rating (120).

Let’s parse this. So we’re talking about the last seven seasons and freshmen playing any position who are basically one of the centerpieces of a given team’s offense. Put those players in a group and numbers show Stone is having the sixth-best offensive season among them. And it’s loaded:

1 - Jared Sullinger, Ohio State | 2010-11 (126)

2 - John Brown, High Point | 2013-14 (124.9)

3 - Ben Simmons, LSU | 2015-16 (121.5)

4 - Alec Burks, Colorado | 2009-10 (120.9)

5 - Melo Trimble, Maryland | 2014-15 (120.7)

6 - Diamond Stone, Maryland | 2015-16 (120.0)

7 - Jahlil Okafor, Duke | 2014-15 (119.9)

8 - Derrick Williams, Arizona | 2009-10 (119.2)

9 - C.J. McCollum, Lehigh | 2009-10 (118.8)

10 - Tyler Hall, Montana State | 2015-16 (118.6)

Look at that list. Every player there that has left college has become a lottery pick in the NBA Draft, aside from Sullinger, who went 21st. But, there was even a time when Sullinger was considered a lottery pick before slipping.

Three Power Five players are still in school (No. 1 prospect Ben Simmons, Stone’s teammate Melo Trimble, who is projected to flirt with the lottery if he declares, and Stone). Pretty good.


3) For a freshman center or power forward since 2009-10 who has played at least 500 minutes, Stone has the fourth-best PER among them (28.9).

It’s another testament to Stone’s efficiency as a post scorer. The others in the Top 5?

1 - Jahlil Okafor, Duke | 2014-15 (30.7)

2 - James Thompson IV, Eastern Michigan | 2015-16 (29.7)

3 - Hassan Whiteside, Marshall | 2009-10 (29.1)

4 - Diamond Stone, Maryland | 2015-16 (28.9)

5 - Joel Embiid, Kansas | 2013-14 (28.2)

There are two Top 3 picks in that group, plus one of the game’s best young centers in Whiteside. Not a bad group to be in.

Attribute that high PER number to Stone’s ability to finish through contact, plus convert at the line when he gets there.

4) Since 2001-02, only two players have shot better than 55 percent from the field and 80 percent from the free-throw line in a freshman season with at least 100 attempts from each.

One of them? Diamond Stone. The other? NBA Rookie of the Year frontrunner Karl-Anthony Towns at Kentucky last season.

Towns, of course, was the No. 1 overall pick in the 2015 NBA Draft. As a rookie, he is averaging 17.1 points, 10.1 rebounds, and 1.8 blocks per game while shooting 54.4 percent from the field and 85 percent from the line.

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Big Ten season comes to a close for Maryland in final seconds of second round


Big Ten season comes to a close for Maryland in final seconds of second round

NEW YORK -- After struggling with injuries and poor play most of the season, Wisconsin is peaking at the right time.

Brevin Pritzl broke a tie with a foul-line jumper with 28 seconds left and Khalil Iverson secured the win with a steal in the waning seconds, leading Wisconsin past Maryland 59-54 on Thursday in the second round of the Big Ten Tournament.


Brad Davison and Iverson each made two free throws in the final nine seconds, and the ninth-seeded Badgers (15-17) advanced to the quarterfinals against top-seeded Michigan on Friday at Madison Square Garden after winning for the fifth time in seven games.

"It's a credit to these guys to my right and also the guys back in the locker room, how they've grown over the last month," Wisconsin coach Greg Gard said. "It has been fun to watch and hopefully we've got a lot more basketball yet to play."

The win wasn't pretty, but the Badgers made all the key plays down the stretch and eight-seeded Maryland (19-13) didn't.

The biggest plays were offensive rebounds by Iverson and Ethan Happ after Pritzl and Davison missed 3-point shots with the game tied at 53.

After the second miss with 40.3 seconds to go, Wisconsin called timeout and Pritzl got the game-winner 12 seconds later.

"I think, especially at the end of this game, the possessions are magnified," Davison said. "When you do things right those final possessions, you can really turn things around."

Maryland had a chance to tie the game when Kevin Huerter was fouled by Happ with 9.2 seconds to go, but he missed the first of two free throws and the Terps came up short for the seventh time in 11 games.

"I feel like we were fighting uphill all night," Maryland coach Mark Turgeon said. "We had the lead 24-23. It's the one time we had the lead. We tied it a bunch of times. It really came down to two things. We fouled too much and we couldn't get a rebound when we needed a rebound."


Happ had 14 points and seven rebounds for Wisconsin, which lost to Michigan State 68-63 less than a week ago. Davison finished with 13 points while Iverson had 11 and six rebounds and Pritzl 10 points. The Badgers, who lost starting point guard D'Mitrik Trice and reserve Kobe King to injuries in December, won despite shooting 36 percent.

"I personally figure we just have to string together an entire game for 40 minutes and just staying toe to toe with them like we did last game," Iverson said. "I know we'll be ready for them."

Huerter had 20 points to lead Maryland. Anthony Cowan Jr. added 16 points and Bruno Fernando had 12 points and nine rebounds.

Wisconsin never trailed in the second half, but it never led by more than three points in the final 11:40 until the closing seconds.

Pritzl's jumper broke a 53-all tie. Huerter then missed the first free throw and made the second. Maryland fouled Davison on the inbounds pass and he made both shots with 8.5 seconds to go for a 57-54 lead.

Wisconsin fouled Cowan rather than let him attempt a game-tying 3-pointer. Since it was a nonshooting foul, the Terps had to inbound with 5 seconds to go and Iverson stole Dion Wiley's pass and then closed the game with two free throws.

"He has evolved into our defensive end stopped," Gard said. "For him to come in and make a play like that at the end to seal it was great."


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Cowan, Fernando, Huerter receive All-Big Ten honors


Cowan, Fernando, Huerter receive All-Big Ten honors

In a roller-coaster season for the Maryland Terrapins, there have been three points of consistency on their roster: Anthony Cowan Jr., Kevin Huerter, and Bruno Fernando.

On Monday, the Big Ten awarded them each their first conference recognition.


Sophomore guard, Cowan was named the All-Big Ten Third Team and the All-Defensive Team. The 6-0 guard finished 10th in the Big Ten in scoring with 15.7 points per game. He also was third in assists (5.2) and steals (1.5). He was a nightmare to defend, filling right into the role that Melo Trimble left vacated this year. Both recognitions were from the Big Ten coaches and media.

Freshman forward, Fernando was selected for the Big Ten All-Freshman Team. Leading all freshmen with 6.4 rebounds and averaging 10.2 points a game, he instantly had an impact on the Terps. From Angola, the 6-10 forward capped his season with 21 points against Iowa on Jan. 7. In his first year, he went from a bench player to a starter, to Sportscenter. It was the first time ever a Terp has been named to the All-Freshman Team 

Huerter was named a Big Ten Honorable Mention by the coaches and media. Stepping into a new role in the 2017-18 season, Huerter struggled but still managed to be highly productive. With the ball in his hands more he shot 42.1 percent from deep and made 72 three-point baskets on the season. Already through two seasons, he is 12th on Maryland’s all-time three-point list.  He also scored 14.6 points a game.