Merritt Returns To CP, Talks Up Terps

Carroll (Washington, D.C.) tackle Richard Merritt visited Maryland March 28.

Maryland played host to a number of notable recruits March 28, headlined by a local four-star offensive guard/tackle, who was on campus for the first time since the Nov. 15 Terps-Michigan State game. Carroll (Washington, D.C.) lineman Richard Merritt made his way over to College Park, Md., with several teammates to watch a scrimmage, meet with the coaches and tour the facilities.

“Oh man, it was cold out there [March] 28, wasn’t it?” Merritt said, chuckling. “But I still had a good time; it was a real good visit. It was good to get back up there again.”

Although he enjoyed chatting up the coaches, Merritt said what struck him the most was meeting, and measuring up with, some of Maryland’s current O-linemen. The 6-foot-5, 305-pound Merritt said he’s just as big as many of the Terps’ trenchmen, and “Because of that, I know if come there I think I’d have a pretty good chance of playing.”

Merritt was pretty impressed with how those linemen performed during the scrimmage. He said he hones in on them, coach Greg Studrawa and his former teammates, Cavon Walker, Derwin Gray, Jermaine Carter and Yannick Ngakoue.

“It was a pretty good scrimmage and it was pretty intense throughout,” said Merritt, who holds offers from UMD, Michigan, Michigan State, Alabama, Georgia, Tennessee, Florida, Florida State, Miami, Auburn, Virginia Tech, Virginia, Oklahoma, North Carolina, Clemson, Mississippi State, Arizona and others. “I liked how the team worked, and it was good to see Cavon, Derwin, Jermaine and Yannick out there.

“And Coach Stud, I think he’s a real good coach. He’ll teach you well and he preps the guys up, but if you make a mistake he’s not going to get too, too mad. He’ll tell you what you need to do rather than get frustrated. So what I like about him is he’s really good at instructing. I like the way he explains things, going through the steps and really helping you learn the position.”

After the scrimmage, Merritt had a sit-down with Studrawa, as well as his recruiter, Mike Locksley. He wasn’t able to speak to head coach Randy Edsall extensively, however.

“Coach Locksley was busy a lot of the time, but he saw me and was like, ‘Hey, Richie, we haven’t seen you in a long time. We need to get you up here more often,’” Merritt said. “So we talked about me coming back over my spring break, and I think I’m definitely going to do that. Then Coach Stud, he was talking about the school mostly, and I asked him a couple questions about how I’d fit in with the line. He was telling me some good things, and I liked talking to him.

“Coach Locksley is my man, and Coach Stud is a great person too.”

Merritt went on to call the new facility slideshow “pretty cool.” He said he didn’t expect the upgrades to be as extensive as they’re going to be.

“The weight room, the new indoor facility, the tunnel coming from the indoor field underground to the team house, the two fields right outside the locker room – man, it’s going to be great,” Merritt said. “I was like, ‘They’re really trying to do something here at Maryland.’”

Following the short trip to College Park, Merritt said the Terps remained one of his foremost suitors. He has an upcoming top 15 favorites list, and said UMD is firmly entrenched in the top 10.

“I’d say schools like Maryland, Florida State, Florida, Miami, Auburn, Alabama, Virginia Tech and Tennessee are the ones really pushing for me to come out for visits,” Merritt said. “So those are some of the schools I’ll be looking at.”

Maryland was Merritt’s first visit this offseason, but he’ll be flying down to FSU April 2 with his coach. If he has time, he’ll also check out Florida and Miami while he’s in the Sunshine State.

This summer, though, Merritt plans to hit the trail in earnest, getting out to schools around the country.

He is unsure when he would like to call one of them home, however.

“I’m in the process of deciding when I want to commit now,” Merritt said. “I don’t know if I want to do it early, like this summer, or maybe at the Under Armour game or on Signing Day. I still haven’t decided.”

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