One of the more intriguing recruits who visited College Park, Md., for a spring practice April 8 was Alexis I DuPont (Wilmington, Del.) athlete Taylor Edwards, a 6-foot-3, 220 pounder who projects as a college tight end or defensive end. Edwards currently holds just one offer from Old Dominion, but that figures to change in short order.
“I’m expecting at least three more offers to come in before the evaluation period, and then once coaches see me work out, I think I’ll get a few more,” Edwards said. “I’m expecting Villanova to offer me once I visit there [April 9], Temple to offer when I’m visiting there [April 10] and UMass to offer when I’m there [April 11]. Then schools like Boston College, which I just saw [April 7], is thinking about offering, Maryland is thinking about offering and Pittsburgh has talked about it too. So the recruiting is really starting to pick up for me right now.”
As far as the Terps are concerned, Edwards has had contact with area recruiter Lyndon Johnson, who has let him know the staff envisions him as a tight end. Edwards said Johnson has been impressed with his game and an offer could materialize once the staff meets and head coach Randy Edsall evaluates his film.
“I’ve spoken to Coach Johnson and Coach [John] Dunn, and Coach Johnson said he’s looking over my transcripts and then [the coaches] will go through the evaluation process and get back to me,” Edwards said. “He said the head coach liked what he saw so far, but he wants to see what I can do at a summer camp so I can show my athleticism and abilities in person. Coach Johnson was saying since I played outside receiver [at DuPont], they want to see how I do as a tight end at the camp.
“And Coach Dunn, he’s the tight ends coach, and he was like, ‘Oh, I love your size.’ He said he liked my film too, loved my skills, and liked what I could potentially do on the field. So hopefully that means an offer is coming soon.”
Edwards said he might be able to snag a Terps verbal even before he attends a one-day this June, which he plans to do.
“I’m pretty confident I’m going to get [an offer] from Maryland. I think after they have their recruiting meeting, I think they’re going to offer,” Edwards said. “I got a really good vibe from the coaches there.”
If Maryland did ante up, Edwards said he would promptly place the Terps either at or near the top of his personal favorites list. He said Old Dominion currently has his eye since that program was the first to offer, but a UMD scholarship could change things.
“If Maryland offered, I would definitely have to do a lot more research and really put them in the mix. It would be a game-changer,” said Edwards, who mentioned that ODU is currently No. 1 due to his longstanding relationship with the staff and a standout visit to campus. “I really liked it at Maryland. I loved it, honestly. I could tell it was a great atmosphere and great environment there. I loved the tempo and intensity of the practice, and I could tell it’s like that day in and day out, with the players and coaches just getting after it. It’s so intense there, and everyone is really driven and on-point. I loved it.
“I loved the facilities there too. I saw the weight room, the locker room and the team meeting room and they were all really nice. The new 2017 facility plans were really impressive too. I haven’t seen anything like that [the upgraded facilities] anywhere else. It was all really great.”
Edwards also know two current Terps, Delaware natives Brandon and Jarrett Ross. The DuPont product said both Ross brothers have trained with him before, and have told him plenty about the school.
“Just from talking to Brandon and Jarrett, I know about the school, the academics and what it’s like there. It sounds like a great place to be,” Edwards said. “The questions I had were about the coaches and facilities, and I saw that [April 8]. And I really, really liked it there.”
Besides UMD, Edwards has visited Vanderbilt, Ball State, ODU, Princeton, Monmouth, Villanova, Rutgers, UMass and Duke. He said the Terps, UMass and BC are recruiting him as a tight end, while Nova, Pitt and a couple others project him as a defensive end.
“Honestly, the position doesn’t matter to me,” Edwards said. “The goal is to get on the field as soon as possible, and whatever school can give me that chance, no matter what position it is, I’ll do it.”
For the moment, Edwards said he’d like to send out his senior film and wait until about five games into his senior season before choosing a college destination. He mentioned how most college coaches will have had time to evaluate his tape and let him know where they stand (in terms of an offer) by around midseason.
“But, honestly, I could decide at any time,” Edwards said. “If the right offer comes and it feels right, I’ll just commit.”
Edwards is coming off a season where he recorded 31 receptions for 586 yards and four touchdowns. He racked up 75 tackles, six sacks and 11 tackles for loss on defense.
Delaware ATH Edwards Has UMD's Attention
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