After averaging 14.9 points, 4.3 rebounds and 2.2 assists per game in 2013-14, Maryland senior wing Dez Wells is off to a good start for the 5-0 Terrapins. In five wins, which includes Maryland’s 72-63 defeat of No. 13 Iowa State earlier this week, the 6-foot-5 Wells is averaging 16.2 points, 4.8 rebounds and 2.6 assists per contest and leads the team in scoring.
Unfortunately for Maryland that win over the Cyclones was a costly one, as it was revealed Friday by head coach Mark Turgeon that Wells suffered a broken bone in his right wrist. As a result of the injury Wells will be sidelined for four weeks as he recovers from surgery.
It goes without saying that this is a tough blow for the Terrapins to absorb, especially with a matchup against No. 8 Virginia set for Wednesday, December 3.
From a scheduling standpoint Maryland won’t be on the road much in December, as seven of their next eight games will be played in College Park and the majority of those matchups are games they’ll be expected to win. The lone exception is a trip to Oklahoma State on December 21. Maryland opens Big Ten play with a game at No. 20 Michigan State on December 30, and the four-week prognosis would have Wells returning at around that point in the season.
Without Wells freshmen Jared Nickens and Dion Wiley, who are averaging 7.6 and 6.4 points per game, respectively, will see more action. Nickens is averaging 17.8 minutes per game thus far, with Wiley not far behind at 17.4 mpg. Also to be affected by the loss of Wells are Jake Layman (13.8 ppg) and Richaud Pack, and the eventual return of power forward Evan Smotrycz (who could return tonight, according to a report) will also impact the Maryland rotation as the forward positions.
Layman’s taken over as the starter at the four with Smotrycz out of the lineup.