Coward on Verge of Maryland Offer

2013 DT Rashaad Coward has received interest from Maryland, and the feelings are mutual.

New York native Rashaad Coward has gotten a fair amount of attention from Division I football programs since last season, but now that Maryland has shown interest, it is clear that Coward's recruitment is heating up.

The Sheepshead Bay High School product has already picked up offers from Albany, Stony Brook, and Wagner College, but a recent phone call indicates an offer from Maryland could be on the way.

“They talked to my coach to ask about what [position] I want to play,” Coward said. “[My coach] told them I'd play anywhere, so it seems like that got a good response.”

Though Coward has never been to College Park, he said he had an interest in Maryland and was looking forward to returning the Terps' call. The 6-foot-6, 285-pound defensive tackle recalled watching Maryland's 24-21 loss to Connecticut last season, and though they struggled, he still felt the Terps were “a good team.”

Connecticut is also in the hunt for Coward's services, and with a visit slated for Boston College this year, Maryland will be competing with at least two Atlantic Coast Conference-affiliated schools to land the 2013 prospect. Coward will be visiting several schools this December, including Connecticut, Boston College, Albany and Massachusetts.

“I'd like to get on Maryland's campus and check it out too,” Coward said. “I'll ask the coach about it when I call.”

So far this season, Coward said things “are really coming together” for himself and his teammates, but he's still working hard on his game to prepare for the next level of competition.

“I'm just trying to work hard for my team,” Coward said. “I motivate my teammates by showing them and not just talk, then they try to match my effort.”

For now Coward's size allows him to push through most of his opponents, and he admitted that “being bigger than most people” is really helping him. However, he recognized that against better competition he won't be able to rely simply on his physical assets.

“I'm working on my get off because your first step determines where you're going to be,” Coward said. “So I'm just trying to get more explosive.”

Coward said distance won't be a factor in his college choice and added that he's looking for the usual things, like a good relationship with the coaches, but there's one thing that will weigh heavily in his decision.

“Just fairness,” Coward said. “I hate favoritism; I just want to go to the best school that will give me a chance and get a great education.”

Coward's top five is comprised of Connecticut, Albany, Stony Brook, Massachusetts, and a tie including Maryland and Buffalo.

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