Terps Tracking Midwest Signal Caller

Maryland has been doing its diligence with class of 2015 signal callers, and one potential target who emerged during the last couple months is from an area the Terps are hoping to establish a presence in. Brothers Rice (Bloomfield, Mich.) gunslinger Alex Malzone is a rising star among Midwest quarterbacks, and Big Ten-bound UMD has been keeping close tabs on him.

Maryland has been doing its diligence with class of 2015 signal callers, and one potential target who emerged during the last couple months is from an area the Terps are hoping to establish a presence in. Brothers Rice (Bloomfield, Mich.) gunslinger Alex Malzone is a rising star among Midwest quarterbacks, and Big Ten-bound UMD has been keeping close tabs on him.

"Coach [Lee] Hull from Maryland actually recruited me, though he's not there anymore," said the 6-foot-2, 185-pound Malzone, who led his team to a Division II state title last year. "I'll see what happens now [with Hull likely leaving], but he was up here two or three times to talk to my coaches about me.

"He watched my film and really liked it, and he said they're taking a strong look at me. He said their offensive coordinator [Mike Locksley] doesn't offer until he sees quarterbacks throw in person, but they want me down for a junior day and a summer camp so I can show them what I can do."

Evidently Malzone plans to take UMD up on that offer, regardless of whether or not Hull is still on staff. He said he "definitely" wants to check Maryland out and prove he deserves an offer.

"Maryland, yes, I want to get down there," said Malzone, who already holds offers from Central Michigan, Western Michigan, Toledo, Bowling Green and Old Dominion. "I'm looking to get there and see a bunch of schools this offseason.

"N.C. State, I know their junior day is Feb. 2 and I'm looking to get there. Then Michigan, Vanderbilt, Indiana, Maryland, Wake Forest, those are all in there. I'll probably get to N.C. State and Wake Forest together because they're so close, then I have a mid-winter break Feb. 15-21 that I'll probably use to see some other schools. I'm trying to figure all that out."

Malzone has already done a bit of early research on Maryland. He watched the Terps' bowl game against Marshall and knows a bit about the history of the program.

"I know they had a pretty good year, some good wins against some good teams, but some bad losses as well," Malzone said. "I know they're going to the Big Ten and it's a great school academically. I know they have a good football program, though maybe not an elite one yet. It's a school I could maybe see myself at. I have to visit first, though, and see what it's about."

There is one factor that could be working against UMD, however. Malzone said he sees himself in a pro-style offense and sounded a bit leery about operating in a zone read. He doesn't mind running the football, but prefers to sit under center and go through his progressions in a traditional offense.

"I noticed Maryland does a lot of zone read; I know that's kind of what they like to do," Malzone said. "I mean, maybe they'd switch it up if they want a guy that is primarily a passer, but we'll see.

"I'd classify myself as a pro-style guy, though if I need to pick up a yard here and there I can do it. I did have a 20-yard touchdown run in the state championship game on a fake field goal, so I can run a little."

Though Maryland has some intrigue, Malzone figures to have plenty of options. Besides his five early offers, he's hearing plenty from programs in the Big Ten, ACC and SEC. He said Michigan, Vanderbilt, Pittsburgh, Indiana, Tennessee, Ohio State, Penn State, N.C. State and Wake Forest, in addition to UMD, have been in touch.

"Right now it seems like Indiana, Pitt and Maryland are closest to offering next," Malzone said. "All of them are pretty impressed and really want me down on campus."

Naturally, Malzone is a Big Ten fan considering he grew up in Michigan. He said his father has Wolverines season tickets and he's been to a bunch of games in the Big House.

"Michigan obviously stands out, but I could see myself at a lot of places. I don't really have a preference right now," Malzone said. "I mean, most of the schools around me are Big Ten programs, so those are the ones I'm most familiar with, but I'm open to exploring."

The Brothers Rice quarterback has attended games at Michigan State, Penn State, Toledo and, of course, Michigan. Last summer he camped at Michigan, Michigan State, Ohio State and Tennessee.

"All the schools I've seen so far are pretty nice. Tennessee was great, Ohio State was very nice, Michigan is always great and Michigan State was great too," Malzone said. "I like pretty much everywhere I've gone so far. I'm really open to anything right now."

Before he starts visiting, though, Malzone is enjoying is winter break. He spent the majority of it in San Antonio for the Army All-American Combine, where he had a chance to compete against a few other elite quarterbacks.

"There were some really good quarterbacks down here, some real cool guys," Malzone said. "It was a great event and I learned a lot. It was up-tempo the whole time, and I threw all day. [The coaches] said I really stood out and they all complimented me and said I did great."

Malzone has proved himself in pads too. In addition to leading his team to a third straight state title and a 14-0 record, he broke his school's passing records. He completed 190 of 281 passes for 2,795 yards and 25 touchdowns.

"It was a great year and now I'm just looking to build on that and get even better," Malzone said. "I can't be satisfied. I still have plenty to work on before I leave high school."

TerrapinTimes Top Stories