St. Joseph Regional (Montvale, N.J.) center Tommy Hatton finally snagged the offer he was hoping for. Since last summer, when he attended a camp in College Park, Md., the 6-foot-3, 280-pounder has never tempered his praise for Maryland. So when Randy Edsall let him know the scholarship was on the table Feb. 14, Hatton was naturally thrilled.
"I'm really, really excited about it. It's a big-time offer. I wasn't really disappointed that they didn't offer before, but for sure I was looking for this one," Hatton said. "Moving to the Big Ten, having been down there and liking the school, my relationship with the coaches, it's great.
"I just talked to Coach Edsall and Coach Stud [Greg Studrawa], and they both want me there. I'll be down for a visit March 8, and I'm eager to see the school again."
Hatton said he was in the middle of a workout when he called Edsall, so the two didn't talk too long. But evidently Maryland's head man told the Jersey product that he loved his athleticism and quickness.
"[Edsall] told me, ‘We really want you, we need you,'" Hatton said. "He was just up here not too long ago, so I got to see him in person then, and it was good to speak to him again. Then Coach Stud got on the phone and told me I'm his guy and he'd love to work with me. He seemed like a really good guy and a really good coach. He has a great reputation coming from LSU."
One of Maryland's main draws, however, is assistant Keith Dudzinski, Hatton's recruiter. Hatton said he has a terrific relationship with him and is looking forward to building on it moving forward.
"I had a really good relationship with Coach Keith, and now it will be even stronger," Hatton said. "I like him a lot and just how he talks to me – we talk about everything. My family likes him a lot too, so I'm excited to continue to build that relationship."
Hatton may be high on UMD, but he has plenty of other suitors and potential suitors to consider. He now holds offers from the Terps, Boston College, Connecticut, Duke, Georgia Tech, Indiana, UMass, Rutgers and Temple. Meanwhile, South Carolina, Syracuse, N.C. State, North Carolina and Miami are showing plenty of interest.
"I mean, I don't really have a favorite right now. I'm grateful for all the offers and I'm excited to see all the schools," Hatton said. "It's all great opportunities and it will be tough to chop down my list and make a decision.
"But I mean, Maryland is obviously up there now. And Boston College, I have a great relationship with their staff and I like them a lot. Rutgers, that's the hometown school and I love them. And there's a bunch of others I'll be looking at too."
He'll start looking starting Feb. 15, when he trips down to Duke. A day later, he'll be in Chapel Hill to check out North Carolina, and on Feb. 17 he'll check out N.C. State. Then on Feb. 19 Hatton will see South Carolina, followed by Georgia Tech Feb. 21. The Maryland visit, as aforementioned, is March 8.
"Georgia Tech is recruiting me real hard and I'm excited to see them; I like them a lot," Hatton said. "Duke too, I like them a lot and they like me and their staff is great. South Carolina, I have a really good relationship with their coach, and he came up to one of my games believe it or not. And N.C. state, they just hit me up and love my film, so hopefully they'll offer as well. UNC just hit me up as well, so we'll see where that goes."
While Hatton seems to have an idea who he likes and doesn't like, don't expect him to make a decision anytime soon. He said he wants to take all five of his official visits before announcing his college choice next winter.
"I don't have an ideal date, but if I can make a decision before Signing Day I will," Hatton said. "I want to take all my visits, because I don't want to be that kid who commits early and then changes his mind down the road. I want to be sure I chose the right school, make my decision and then be done with it."
Hatton Lands Coveted Offer
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