Erasing Gary Williams

Maryland basketball is played on Gary Williams Court. 7-0 Ukranian center Alex Len is the recipient of the Gary Williams Scholarship. It's clear that Maryland hoops is, and will always be, associated with Gary Williams. After all, this is the man who put together a string of seasons where the Terps advanced at least to the Sweet-16 in five of six years, twice made the Final Four, and won it all in 2002.

Those were Maryland's only two Final Fours in their history, and obviously their only Title.

But here we are just one year and five months since he coached his last game for the Terrapins, and if you look at the personel in the program it's hard to tell that he was ever here.

Bino Ranson, who coached with Gary Williams for all of one season, is the only assistant coach that was retained by Mark Turgeon. All the other coaches are new. The Director of Operations is new. The video coordinator is new.

And if you look at the 15-man roster, three were ever coached by Gary Williams. Senior James Padgett has the most experience, having played two seasons for Williams. The other two are Pe'Shon Howard (1 season), and John Auslander, and Auslander never played in a game for the previous regime, but he did sit out Williams' final season after he transferred.

And that's it. Since Williams stepped down, Jordan Williams turned pro, Terrell Stoglin turned pro rather than sitting out a season, Mychal Parker transferred, Ashton Pankey transferred, Haukur Palsson left the team, Ersin Levent left the team, and everyone else graduated.

Just this year Mark Turgeon brought in nine players. There was the five man recruiting class (Shaquille Cleare, Sam Cassell Jr, Seth Allen, Jake Layman and Charles Mitchell), three transfers (Logan Aronhalt, Evan Smotrycz and Dezmine Wells), and one walk-on (Conner Lipinski).

Last year's class at least contained Nick Faust, who was recruited by Williams, and then re-recruited by Turgeon.

Regardless, for better or worse, this is now Turgeon's team. Twelve of fifteen guys never even participated in a practice run by Gary Williams.

This will also be the tenth season since Williams finished his streak of deep Tourney runs, so for most Terps fans, it might be bittersweet, but cutting the cord so quickly is probably a good thing.