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How Turgeon used an NBA All-Star to make a point to Jared Nickens

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How Turgeon used an NBA All-Star to make a point to Jared Nickens

COLLEGE PARK -- Before Saturday’s game against Ohio State, Maryland sophomore Jared Nickens had been enduring the worst shooter slump of his career. He was 4-of-26 from three-point range over his previous six games, a difficult stretch for a player who makes his living from deep.

So head coach Mark Turgeon pulled the sophomore aside after practice this week.

“You know Kyle Korver?” Turgeon asked him, referencing the Atlanta Hawks guard who is a 43 percent career three-point shooter.

“Yeah,” Nickens said.

“You know he missed 17 straight threes this year? He’s a pretty good shooter, right?” Turgeon asked rhetorically. “It happens. You just need to relax.”

That must have helped, because Nickens might now be back on track.

MORE TERPS: BEST MATTA HAS EVER COACHED AGAINST? 

In Maryland’s 100-65 blowout win over Ohio State on Saturday, Nickens hit two of his three three-point attempts to finish with six points off the bench for the Terrapins. Sure, that’s a small sample size, but seeing the ball go through the net can often do a lot for such a pure shooter.

Senior Jake Layman has gone through the same sorts of stretches in his career, including offensive droughts this season. The solution can take time, but it’s rather simple.

“In games, just keep shooting the ball,” Layman said. “We’re not going to not want Jared to shoot an open shot.”

So Nickens kept shooting and here he is.

Turgeon has been more impressed with his continued development as a defender, but he knows the value the sophomore brings when some of those threes start to fall.

“We’re much more explosive when he makes shots,” Turgeon said. “It’s good to see him make a couple.”

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Maryland loses two as Justin Jackson declares for NBA Draft, will sign with agent

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USA TODAY Sports

Maryland loses two as Justin Jackson declares for NBA Draft, will sign with agent

COLLEGE PARK, Md. -- Maryland forward Justin Jackson will forgo his final two seasons of college eligibility to seek a career in the NBA.

Terrapins coach Mark Turgeon also says guard Dion Wiley will transfer before playing his senior season.

MORE TERPS: LEFTY DRIESELL IS FINALLY GOING TO ENTER THE HALL OF FAME

Jackson averaged 10.5 points as a freshman before missing most of the 2017-18 season with a shoulder injury.

Jackson says, "After talking with my family and weighing my options, it's my desire to turn my full attention to preparing for a career in professional basketball."

Wiley appeared in 83 career games, playing a backup role on three teams that advanced to the NCAA Tournament under Turgeon.

Maryland was 19-13 this season, including 8-10 in the Big Ten, and failed to reach the postseason.

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Lefty Driesell to be inducted into the Naismith Hall of Fame per report

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Lefty Driesell to be inducted into the Naismith Hall of Fame per report

Long-time University of Maryland men’s basketball coach Charles Grice “Lefty” Driesell will finally be inducted into the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame this year.

This is according to NBC Sports Washington contributor Jon Feinstein.

Driesell coached the Terrapins for 17 seasons between 1969-86. While guiding the program to eight NCAA Tournament appearances and an NIT Championship, Driesell transformed Maryland into a legitimate force in college basketball.

When hired by the Terps, Driesell famously announced that he wanted to turn Maryland into the “UCLA of the East.” After only four seasons he had made it to two ACC Championship Games and his first Elite Eight appearance. His success opened the door not only for the program but the school to compete at the highest levels of competition.

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Maryland made it as high as the Elite Eight twice under the reign of Driesell. He was named ACC Coach of the Year twice and won one ACC Tournament Championship in 1984. At the time of his NIT Championship with the Terps in 1972, the NIT was held in a similar regard to the NCAA Tournament.

He is second on Maryland’s all-time wins list (348), behind Gary Williams’ 461. Driesell however, still holds the best win percentage of all Maryland coaches with 68.6 win percentage.

After Maryland, the former Duke basketball coached at James Madison for just short of a decade and ended his coaching days at Georgia State. Driesell also coached at Davidson before taking the Maryland job to combine for over 40 seasons at the head of a Division I basketball program.

The 86-year-old was inducted into the College Basketball Hall of Fame back in 2007. He also the namesake for the NCAA’s best defensive player of the year award, which was first awarded in 2010.

The official announcement from the Naismith Hall of Fame will be during the Final Four on Saturday, March 31.

WANT MORE HOOPS?  Listen below as Troy Machir and Chick Hernandez discuss Lefty Driesell's legacy in the area and why the Terps icon was on the outside of the Hall of Fame for so long.