After Maryland offered senior Brad Kaaya out of California last week, it became clear the Terps wanted to add a second quarterback to its 2014 recruiting class. And they may have found one in Saint Paul, Minn.
Cretin Derham Hall signal caller Ricardo Johnson is a late-blooming recruit who Maryland is apparently keeping close tabs on. The 6-foot-1, 185 pounder recently sent film to the Terps' staff at the suggestion of his quarterback trainer, Donovan Dolley, who works in Detroit, Mich., and has a relationship with the UMD coaches. Johnson said Maryland's Mike Locksley has contacted his coaches about him and will be speaking to him personally in short order.
"Maryland has indicated they really liked what they saw," said Johnson, who is coming off a season where he threw for 2,103 yards and 21 touchdowns, while also rushing for five more scores. "They liked that I am rated nationally both as a dual threat and a pocket passer. And [they liked] my ability to stand in the pocket, quickly identify the receiver and accurately deliver the with consistency, as well as making plays with my feet."
Johnson was actually watching film of Maryland when this reporter spoke to him, and he's already done his research on the program. He said he's eager to visit College Park if Maryland does offer, likely sometime in January.
"I am hoping for an offer and I do intend to visit. I recognize this is an exciting time at Maryland," Johnson said. "Conference change, offense is really cementing, this class has an impressive offensive line and there are great weapons to attack defenses by air, both in space and vertically. I watched film of them and I believe I could fit in well in that system."
Besides his trainer, Johnson does have a direction connection to the College Park area. He said his father attended George Washington University in Washington, D.C., and was a huge Len Bias fan back in the day. Johnson said his father never missed a Terps game while Bias was there. Furthermore, he has a sister who lives in Bethesda, Md., and went to school at Howard.
"I have been to D.C. and I like the area a good amount," Johnson said. "That is an area that will provide great internship and/or job opportunities in the future."
Indeed, Johnson is focused on academics and his future first, which is one of the reasons he's attracted to Maryland. He said he has a 3.9 GPA and wants to get into the business field.
"I know that not only will I get a great education at Maryland, but its location to so many hubs of business and politics is great," Johnson said. "There are so many opportunities there."
The Terps aren't the only school looking at him, however. He said Northwestern, Baylor, a couple Ivy League schools and several Pac-12 programs have contacted his coach about him during the open period. He hasn't planned any visits yet, but he said first and foremost he'll decide what schools to look into based on their respective academic reputations.
"My family is very, very academically focused, so education is extremely important," Johnson said. "So I have agreed to focus on my GPA during this period and get recruiting started in earnest next month."
Terps Tracking Minnesota QB
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