COLLEGE PARK, Md. – Maryland played host to numerous “name” visitors at fall camp Aug. 6, and the most prominent among them was a local class of 2016 four-star quarterback who is high on the Terps’ priority list. Bullis’ (Potomac, Md.) Dwayne Haskins made his second trip to College Park this summer, and this time he was afforded the opportunity to sit in on position meetings, talk to the staff and watch the full practice.
“It was a really nice time,” said the 6-foot-2, 185-pounder, who holds more than 20 scholarship offers from the likes of Maryland, Tennessee, Ohio State, Florida, Florida State, Notre Dame, Virginia, Virginia Tech, Wisconsin, Nebraska, Texas, Boston College, West Virginia, Penn State, Michigan, Michigan State, Rutgers and others. “The last time I was at Maryland was just for the 7-on-7 with my team, but this was a more personal visit. I got to sit in on Coach [Mike] Locksley’s meeting with the offense, I saw how the players interacted and I got a feel for how they do things at Maryland. It was a really good experience.”
Haskins said the main thing he took away from the workout was how the players responded to the coaches. He said he didn’t just pay attention to the quarterbacks, but rather scanned the entire field in order to get a grasp of the different coaches and how they worked.
“It was an up-tempo, organized practice, and I can tell Maryland has great coaches,” Haskins said. “I like the athletes they have there, especially the receivers, and how all of the guys interact and have each other’s backs. It’s a good group there, and they work well with the coaches.”
The Bullis signal caller specifically pointed to star receivers Deon Long and Stefon Diggs, as well as wideout Levern Jacobs, as players who caught his eye. He also watched running back Jacquille Veii, who is an old friend from high school.
“The receivers, definitely, they’re really fast and big-time playmakers. That’s something you look for as a quarterback – those guys who can make plays,” Haskins said. “I was watching C.J. [Brown], too, and he did well throwing the ball and getting it to those guys. It’s a good offense.”
An offense Haskins could potentially fit into?
“I can definitely see myself in that offense,” Haskins said. “I like how they run things, and I think I’d fit well. They do a lot of different things, use some unique formations, and I like that. They do zone-read, and that’s not something I prefer since I like to stand in the pocket, but I can do that a little bit and get used to it.”
Haskins said he didn’t have a chance to chat up Locksley much during position meetings, but he said he learned how Maryland’s offensive coordinator works and how the current Terps absorb the information. He called it “interesting” and informative, while mentioning that throughout the day all the Terps’ staff members made sure he and his father were enjoying themselves.
“Coach [Randy] Edsall, Coach [Keenan] McCardell, Coach Locksley, and really all of them. I talked to everyone there,” Haskins said. “Coach Edsall was telling me to stay in touch and he’d be watching me this year. He wants me down there, and I’m coming back for a game this season.”
While Haskins didn’t have an extensive conversation with Locksley, he has been in touch with him. The Bullis product said the two already have a rapport and he’s “looking forward to building that” going forward.
“I think he’s a great guy and someone I can learn a lot from. He’s an experienced coordinator, a good coach and someone I could see myself playing under,” Haskins said. “He’s telling me I’m his guy and he really wants me there.”
Locksley, of course, is the father of class of 2015 quarterback Kai Locksley (Gilman/Baltimore, Md.), who is currently committed to Florida State. Haskins heard all about Kai Locksley’s decision via social media, and after the Gilman gunslinger pledged to FSU, Haskins said he saw an opening at the local school.
“There’s an opportunity at Maryland now,” Haskins said. “There’s a chance I can come in there, play early and have a real impact there. [Maryland] is definitely on my list right now, and high up there. They’re going to be right there for me.”
The stay-home movement has been a theme Randy Edsall and the staff have preached in their respective Maryland-D.C. recruiting territories. Haskins has heard the mantra from Locksley, and he’s well aware how much influence he has on other nearby class of 2016 and even 2017 prospects.
“Staying home, building something at the hometown school, it’s something to think about. I can definitely talk to some guys, bring some guys in, keep the local guys home,” said Haskins, who has a particularly close relationship with top Terps target Trevon Diggs (Avalon/Bethesda, Md.). “We’ll see what happens; it’s something to think about.”
Of course, Haskins is thinking about plenty of other programs as well. He visited 10 schools this summer, including UMD, Ohio State, Notre Dame, WVU, Va Tech, Tennessee, Rutgers, Florida, Florida State, Boston College and Wake Forest. The Buckeyes’ visit in June, in particular, caught his eye.
“Ohio State is still my dream school,” Haskins said. “That’s the school I grew up watching. Guys like Troy Smith, Braxton Miller, those are the guys I watched on TV. Then the visit up there was great and the coaches up there really want me there. It’s a real nice school.”
But, Haskins insisted, he doesn’t want to use words like “leaders” and “favorites” just yet, He said all the schools he took in had something to offer him, and he’s eager to learn more about each program.
It is telling, however, that he has three planned visits for games this fall.
“I’m going to games at Maryland, Ohio State and Notre Dame,” he said. “Those are places I want to see again and see how the atmosphere is [on game day].”
For now, though, Haskins is finished summer trips. He said his main focus is on taking what he learned this offseason and adding it to his repertoire. Footwork, accuracy, pocket presence – he said he worked on it all with his trainers the last several months.
“I want to get better all-around, and then just lead my team to another [IAC] championship,” Haskins said. “I’m getting ready now, and workouts have been going great so far.”
Haskins Visits UMD, Has Terps Firmly In Play
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