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Maryland’s Stone to sign agent, Trimble declares for draft

COLLEGE PARK, Md. (AP) Maryland freshman center Diamond Stone will enter the NBA draft and sign with an agent while sophomore point guard Melo Trimble will declare but not hire an agent, the school announced Monday.

The 6-foot-3 Trimble averaged a team-high 14.8 points and 4.9 assists last season for the Terrapins, who went 27-9 and reached the NCAA Tournament regional semifinals for the first time since 2003. Trimble averaged 15.5 points over the last two seasons.

Players who declare for the draft but do not hire an agent have until May 25 to withdraw and retain their college eligibility.

”Melo will go through the draft process, which will provide him a stronger understanding of where he could potentially be selected,” Maryland coach Mark Turgeon said in a statement. ”Melo has worked very hard and we will continue to support and guide him throughout this process.”

Added Trimble: ”I am looking forward to taking advantage of this opportunity and entering my name in the NBA draft. I am excited that the new rules allow me the chance to go through this process.”

Stone was Maryland’s second-leading scorer last season, averaging 12.5 points while leading the Terps in blocked shots (56) and earning the Big Ten’s newcomer of the year award. He set a school freshman scoring record Dec. 30 with a 39-point game against Penn State.

”My family and I spent a great deal of time discussing my future and we felt this was the best decision as I pursue my dream of playing professional basketball,” Stone said in a statement.

Forward Robert Carter Jr., who started in the frontcourt alongside Stone last season, announced plans to give up his final year of eligibility and enter the draft while hiring an agent last week. With senior Jake Layman and graduate student Rasheed Sulaimon also departing, the Terps would lose all five of their starters if Trimble opts to remain in the draft.

Online:

AP College Basketball website: http://collegebasketball.ap.org/

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