Maryland assistant Chad Wilt was back in familiar territory last week, trekking through Indiana where he spent three years recruiting for Ball State. There were a number of recruits, particularly defensive linemen, who noted Wilt's presence in their respective high schools, and one emerging tackle recruit was thrilled to see him and already has high interest in Maryland.
"Maryland came in [April 30], and they actually started recruiting me last year, so it was great that they were back up here," said Nick Dillon of Stevenson HS (Lincolnshire, Ind.). "I was originally recruited by Coach [Tom] Brattan, but he retired, and now Coach Wilt is my contact there. I met him briefly and then I'm calling him on the phone a little later. I remember him from before [with Ball State], and he seems like a really good guy and I definitely want to get to know him more, and I'm definitely interested in Maryland."
The 6-foot, 266-pound Dillon currently holds offers from Bowling Green and Western Michigan but said Maryland is keeping close tabs. Regardless of whether the Terps offer or not, Dillon said he still wants to make the trip East for a camp or a personal visit. He was actually at UMD's one-day last summer and has strong connections to the area.
"I have family in Silver Spring, and I lived in Maryland for about a year with my grandmother," said Dillon, who is originally from Kentucky. "I'm real familiar with the area and I like it a lot out there. My family usually goes out there every year or two, so I'm out there a good bit. My mom is from the Virginia area and my dad went to Kennedy High School out in the D.C. area."
Dillon went on to say that he had a "great" camp experience last year, which is one of the main reasons he's so interested in the Terps. Even though his original Terps recruiter is no longer at the school, Dillon is excited about the program and the school in general.
"The camp was a great, great experience and I learned a lot out there. The school was beautiful, the coaches were really good teachers and I just enjoyed myself," Dillon said. "Maryland is a great school, it's now in the Big Ten, and you can get a great education there. There's a lot to like about Maryland and it's definitely a school I'd love to get an offer from."
Speaking of said offer, Dillon indicated one could be coming this summer. That isn't a definite, however, and he'll know more after speaking to Wilt.
"Coach Wilt is going to let me know soon what the staff thinks of me," Dillon said. "He's going to let me know whether I should come to a camp or if they can offer me now. But, to be honest, I'll probably go to the camp anyway even if I get an offer now. I just really am interested in [the Terps] and I want to go out there and compete. It's a great place, and I'd love to go to school there."
Maryland is just one FCS program tracking Dillon, however. He said Minnesota, Cincinnati, Iowa, Michigan State, Purdue, Nevada and others have been through Stevenson and many others have stayed in contact.
"I'm just blessed to have all these coaches looking at me, recruiting me, inviting me to camps," Dillon said. "Since the contact period started I've really seen the recruiting pick up. It's honestly been a blessing."
Dillon went on to say that Minnesota, Cincinnati and Nevada are recruiting him the hardest right now. He mentioned the Bearcats have told him they have him next on their board, while he's high on Minnesota's and Nevada's list as well. It's conceivable Dillon could secure offers from all three following camps.
But there's two staffs in particular Dillon really wants to catch the eye of.
"Iowa and Michigan State definitely," Dillon said. "I talk to both of them regularly and they say I'm on the right track for an offer. I've visited both places and really like them. They're close to home and very good programs with good traditions."
Dillon visited Michigan State earlier this spring and plans to return to Ames, Iowa, after tripping there last year. He also will hit Maryland, Minnesota and Cincinnati this summer, in addition to numerous camps in June.
"I have to sit down with my parents and determine an exact schedule, which I'll do fairly shortly," Dillon said.
If he grabs a few more offers on these visits, it's possible Dillon might be ready to make his college decision before his senior season. But that's not set in stone, and Dillon admitted he hadn't given it much thought yet.
"Right now I'm keeping all options open and taking everything in," said Dillon, who had 90 tackles and four sacks last year. "I'll weigh all the options I have, talk to these college coaches and decide what's best for me."
Midwest DT Has Strong Connections to Maryland
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