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Local hoops teams bypassed in preseason coaches poll

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Local hoops teams bypassed in preseason coaches poll

Plenty of promise exists up and down the Maryland's rosters and few will be stunned if the programs ends up ranked at some point this season. Just not yet.

Neither the Terps or Georgetown Hoyas picked up any votes in the just released USA Today preseason coaches poll. Hardly a stunner considering the youth on both rosters, though the ACC and Big East schools were picked to finish in the top of half of their respective conferences.

Indiana, led by sophomore sensation Cody Zeller, tops the initial poll, receiving 21 of a possible 31 first place votes. Up next, Bluegrass state stalwarts Louisville and Kentucky, each receiving five first place votes, followed by Ohio State, Michigan, North Carolina State, Kansas, Syracuse, Duke and Florida. Georgetown opens the season against the Gators on an aircraft carrier parked in Jacksonville.

While no DMV program ranked among the top 25, Virginia Commonwealth, gearing up for its first season in the Atlantic 10, finished second among the "others receiving votes" folk. Colonial Athletic Association favorite Drexel received two votes.

The ACC voters slotted Maryland sixth among the 12 conference teams. Georgetown finished fifth within the Big East.

Four ACC programs rank among the top 25, including North Carolina (11) and Florida State (tied for 24). Notre Dame (23) joins Louisville and Syracuse among Big East schools in the top 25.

And no, neither Maryland coach Mark Turgeon or Georgetown's John Thompson III are among the 31 voting coaches. Coppin State's Fang Mitchell is among the group filling out a ballot.

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Video: Terps' football coach DJ Durkin throws out first pitch for the O's

Video: Terps' football coach DJ Durkin throws out first pitch for the O's

BY JEREMY FIALKOW (@JeremyFialkow)

One football coach threw out the ceremonial first pitch for the Orioles on Wednesday, and it wasn't John Harbaugh ... nor was it Jay Gruden.

In fact, it was the new head coach of the Terps, DJ Durkin, that impressed the not-so-packed crowd in Baltimore with a ball thrown right down the middle, albeit maybe a little high.

Just to be extra certain not to embarrass himself in front of the home crowd, Durkin was caught taking practice reps behind the scenes.

It's safe to say practice makes perfect.

Rumor has it, if either the Colorado Rockies or Orioles run out of arms late in the game, Durkin could be lurking in the bullpen ready to go.

RELATED: TERPS DISCUSS TROPHY RIVALRY GAME WITH RUTGERS

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Report: Maryland, Rutgers discussing trophy rivalry football game

Report: Maryland, Rutgers discussing trophy rivalry football game

Maryland and Rutgers have engaged in "preliminary discussions" to start an annual rivalry football game -- with a trophy on the line -- according to a report Tuesday from NJ.com. The report cites Rutgers athletic director Pat Hobbs and football coach Chris Ash. 

Rutgers and Maryland both joined the Big Ten East in July 2014 and have played two games against each other since becoming members of the conference. The Scarlet Knights beat the Terrapins in 2014, 41-38. The Terrapins won in 2015, 46-41, in the lone victory under interim head coach Mike Locksley.

The Big Ten is full of trophy games, including Illinois-Northwestern, Iowa-Wisconsin, and Minnesota-Wisconsin.

MORE TERPS: TURGEON, HUERTER WIN GOLD IN CHILE

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Report: Former 4-star CB to enroll at Maryland after leaving Florida

Report: Former 4-star CB to enroll at Maryland after leaving Florida

Former four-star cornerback J.C. Jackson will enroll at Maryland and be immediately eligible to play for the Terrapins in 2016, according to a report from 247Sports.com.

Coming out of the high school class of 2014, Jackson as the 21st-best player in the country at his position and the No. 243 overall player in the nation according to Rivals.com.

He signed with Florida and redshirted his freshman season. In April 2015, he was charged with three felony counts of armed robbery and another felony charge of burglary stemming from an alleged home invasion in Florida. 

In Nov. 2015, Jackson was found not guilty on all four charges. He did not return to play for the Gators, instead transferring to Riverside CC (Calif.). 

Maryland head coach DJ Durkin is the former defensive coordinator at Florida. He served on the program's staff from 2010-14.

Maryland is losing three starters in its secondary from 2015, with senior Will Likely being the only featured player returning. That lack of depth figures to give Jackson an opportunity to start in 2016.