The Terps are looking to add two more underclassmen cornerbacks to their 2017 class, and defensive backs coach Aazaar Abdul-Rahim is leaving no stones unturned. He’s offered uncommitted recruits, committed recruits and junior college recruits in an attempt to attract top-talent to College Park, Md.
The latest look went out to Vanguard (Ocala, Fla.) three-star corner O.J. Tucker who pledged to Georgia Tech Aug. 6.
“The Maryland offer was a real nice offer,” said the 6-foot, 190-pound Tucker. “It was an offer I was looking for. Even before I committed, Maryland was an offer I was looking for. Coach Rahim started following me on Twitter awhile ago, and I had a feeling it was going to come. And when it did [Sept. 13], I was pretty excited. Coach Rahim told me he thinks I’m a great player, he really liked my tape and he thinks I can help them. They have a lot to offer.”
Namely, playing time and the opportunity to suit up in the Big Ten. Tucker said while he doesn’t know a ton about the Terps yet, at first blush it seems like a potential fit for him.
“I like the Big Ten; that’s a great conference. And also, Coach Rahim said he has two seniors that are probably leaving after this year, so he needs corners. He was saying he’s bringing in four corners this year and they’re going to get a chance to compete for time,” Tucker said. “So that was big, and then I know Coach [D.J.] Durkin he did a great job at Florida and Michigan. I like that he’s a defensive-minded [head coach].”
With the offer in tow, Tucker said he’s looking to officially visit College Park sometime in October, with the Michigan State game circled Oct. 22.
But Maryland isn’t the only school Tucker’s looking to see. He also has Wake Forest and Nebraska, two other prime suitors, on the docket.
“Coach Jackson at Wake likes me a lot and wants me at boundary corner. He likes how physical I am, and I want to get up there to see a game. Wake will probably be my first official,” Tucker sad. “And Nebraska was actually my very first offer. Coach [Brian] Stewart, I like him a lot. He coached a lot of guys from down here [near Ocala], and one of them is in the NFL now. We have a great relationship and I like what he’s about.”
Tucker wouldn’t list any clear leaders, but it’s clear he likes the Huskers a good deal. The fact Nebraska jumped on him first and has stayed on him even after he committed has meant a good deal.
“I think Nebraska is going to be my last official in late October,” Tucker said. “Then after that I’ll probably make my final decision.”
Of course, Tucker is currently committed to the Yellow Jackets. But he admitted his situation could be a bit tenuous given the number of 2017 defensive back commits Ga Tech has.
“I’m still committed, but there’s five corners coming in right now,” Tucker said. “And they have seven on the roster already and no seniors. So I have to see what’s up with Tech. I like it up there and I like the coaches, but I just have to see.”