Travon Stott couldn’t have asked for a better birthday present. Not only did the junior Good Counsel (Olney, Md.) cornerback have off school two straight days due to a snowstorm, but less than 48 hours before his actual birthday, he landed his first scholarship offer from the University of Maryland.
“I can’t tell you how excited I am right now,” Stott said. “To get my first offer, and for it to be from the hometown school, the school I grew up watching on TV, and for it to be right around my birthday – man, this is huge.
“And, honestly, I had no idea this was going to happen. Coach [Randy] Edsall just randomly followed me on Twitter [March 5], and sent me a message asking me to call him. So I did, and he said he liked my film; liked how I played; and asked how I felt to have an offer from Maryland.”
The 6-foot, 175-pound Stott was admittedly taken aback by Edsall’s comments. So much so that the Good Counsel product wasn’t sure he’d heard UMD’s headman correctly.
But after reconfirming that, yes, the offer was real, Stott could hardly hide his emotions.
“I told Coach Edsall I felt great about the offer,” Stott said. “I mean, who wouldn’t want to be part of the stay-home movement right now? And this being my first offer? And now my parents can see me play since it’s only 30 minutes away? Man, Maryland is definitely up there for me – my tops. It’s definitely going to be one of my tops, no doubt.”
Apparently Stott contemplated committing on the spot. But after speaking to Edsall, he decided it was best to at least think things through and talk to his coaches and parents.
“[Committing] was pretty tempting, I’m not going to lie,” Stott said. “I told Coach Edsall the offer meant a lot and I was thinking about it. But I was so overwhelmed, and he understood that this was my first offer and should probably talk things over with my family first. But I was tempted, no doubt.”
Although Stott was genuinely surprised by the verbal, the UMD offer did not come out of the blue. The Good Counsel corner has been in College Park, Md., numerous times the last couple years, including for games during the fall and most recently a visit Feb. 24 when the Terps’ hoops team took on Wisconsin.
“Having KeAndre [Jones] already committed to Maryland, the staff there knew about me and my teammates because I’ve been up there with [Jones],” Stott said. “Plus Coach [Mike] Locksley, who recruits my school, he’s been through to talk about us all. But I honestly didn’t know [the UMD coaches] were thinking about offering. It’s a blessing.”
Following the offer, Stott immediately contacted his good friend Keandre Jones, the second commitment in Maryland’s 2016 class. The local linebacker has been talking up the Terps to his teammates, and he did so once again March 5.
“KeAndre loves Maryland – loves it,” Stott said. “He’s one of my best friends, and that’s going to have a major influence on me. When I told him I had the offer he was like, ‘Travon, this is the move man – do it [commit].’ So, yeah, I really like Maryland a lot right now. I agree with [Jones] – Maryland is looking like a good move.”
Stott said his most recent trip to College Park certainly resonated. Jones, along with several other Good Counsel players and numerous local elites, watched the Maryland-Wisconsin game, had a chance to interact with the football coaches, and saw UMD’s upgraded facility plans.
“Oh, that [Feb. 24] visit was great. I talked to Coach Locksley quite a bit, and I definitely think he’s a cool guy,” Stott said. “And I was talking to Jesse [Aniebonam] a lot too, and some of the other players on the team. Jesse was telling me how much he loved it there and how great the program is. Then we all watched the basketball game, and that was just a great atmosphere. The Maryland students are awesome.
“The coaches showed us the new facilities too, and they should be ready by my freshman year. After seeing them, I was like, ‘Whoa, I didn’t know Maryland was like that.’ The new indoor fields? Oh, it’s awesome.”
Stott also attended the Maryland-Ohio State football game during the fall, calling the Byrd Stadium vibe “really cool.”
But before Stott pulls the trigger on a Terps commitment, he said he does want to explore some other potential options. He said no other major Division I schools have expressed interest, but would like to go through the spring evaluation period to see what kind of looks he can garner. In particular, Stott said he’d like to cull out offers from Michigan, Michigan State and Pittsburgh.
“I just want to see what else is out there before I do anything,” said Stott, who has visited Virginia Tech, Penn State, Temple and UMD. “I’m just going to wait things out for a little bit, see what else comes in. But, I mean, Maryland is definitely big. It’s definitely big.”
Stott said he’d likely announce his final college decision this summer.
He is coming off a season where he recorded three interceptions in six games. Stott tore his labrum mid-year but returned for the conference championship game in December.
“I feel like getting hurt probably affected my recruiting a little bit,” Stott said. “I felt like I was having a real good year, but then I got hurt and now some [college] coaches are probably questioning me some. So I want to sort of prove that I’m healthy and can play at a high level.”
Stott Considered Committing On The Spot
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