Maryland and assistant John Dunn are beginning to develop quite a presence at Imhotep Institute (Philadelphia, Pa.), having snagged elite receiver D.J. Moore in this year’s class, while making solid in-roads with nationally-touted junior tight end Naseir Upshur. And on Dec. 2, the Terps threw their name into the hat for another Imhotep rising star, class of 2016 running back Tyliek Raynor, a 5-foot-9, 170-pound speedster with early verbals from Rutgers, Temple, Buffalo and now Maryland.
“What happened was a coach from Maryland, he came up to the school on [Dec. 1] to offer me, but I wasn’t there that day, but on [Dec. 2], my coach, Coach [Al] Crosby, told me about it,” Raynor said. “I was really excited about it. It meant a whole lot, because my friend and teammate, D.J. Moore, is committed there and I know it’s a program on the rise. It’s definitely a school I’m going to be looking at.”
Raynor didn’t attend any Terps games this year with Moore and Upshur, but he was in College Park, Md., last summer when the Imhotep senior receiver made one of his many trips to Maryland. Raynor said he had a chance to tour the campus, meet a couple coaches and check out the facilities.
“I really liked it down there, and I thought it was a great campus. The facilities were really nice too – we saw the weight room, the stadium… it was nice,” Raynor said. “I got to meet the receivers’ coach [Keenan McCardell] and one other coach, and I really liked them too. They were very honest and seemed like good people. They talked a lot about education, and I really liked that, because grades are important to me.”
While Raynor hasn’t returned since then, he said he’s heard plenty about the program from Moore.
“D.J. really loves Maryland and he’s always talking about them. He says the coaches are great, it’s a great school and how they’re going to do great things in the Big Ten,” said Raynor, who plans to be at one of the Terps’ upcoming junior days. “He was really excited for me when he heard I got an offer from them. He was telling me to commit already (laughs).”
The Imhotep junior hasn’t had any consistent contact with a Maryland coach yet, but he hopes to now that he’s pulled an offer. He said he’d like to develop a rapport with Dunn and meet the rest of the staff in person.
“Hopefully now that I’m on their radar I’ll stay in touch more,” Raynor said. “I’m looking forward to it.”
Besides UMD, Raynor has also visited Temple, Rutgers and Pittsburgh. All three had qualities that stood out, including the Panthers’ facilities, Temple’s location and Rutgers’ staff.
“Pitt was really nice, and I loved the weight room and how they’re right next to where the Steelers play. Pitt was really cool,” Raynor said. “Temple, that’s right in my backyard and it’s like home every time I go there. That’s a great hometown option for me. And Rutgers, I liked the coaches there and how they’ve put out some really good running backs.”
Raynor said Virginia Tech, Purdue and West Virginia are showing increased interest. His ideal suitor, however, is Oregon, though Raynor hasn’t had any contact with the Ducks.
The Imhotep back is coming off a season where he rushed for 1,300 yards and scored 14 touchdowns.
“I’m a really versatile runner,” Raynor said. “I can break away from anybody in the open field, but I hit the holes hard and I can pick up extra yards after contact too. And if you need me to I can go out wide and play receiver. I feel like I can do a little of everything.”
Terps Pursuing Another Imhotep Recruit
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