After a couple missed opportunities at earlier College Park, Md., trips, four-star 2018 center David McCormack (Norfolk Academy/Norfolk, Va.) finally made it back to Maryland Nov. 20. The 6-foot-10, 290-pounder, who attended UMD’s game against Michigan last winter, had a full, nine-hour stay in College Park, allowing him to take in the campus; talk to the coaches; watch the UMD-Towson hoops game; learn about the academics; and delve deeper into the program’s inner-workings.
“It was a really good time. I had fun, and I feel like once you put all the pieces together of what Maryland has to offer, it’s a great program,” said McCormack, who claims offers from the likes of UMD, Georgetown, Va Tech; Ga Tech; Baylor; Auburn; Kansas; FSU; NC State; Penn State; Seton Hall; Pitt; Wake Forest; and Xavier. “They have a lot of positive things going on at Maryland, I like the coaches, and they have a great reputation for big-man development. It’s a school I’m going to be looking at.”
McCormack said he arrived at UMD around 9 a.m. Nov. 20 and immediately took a campus tour, the recruit noting how much he liked the area; the buildings; and the facilities. It was his first time seeing the school as a whole, as during his previous stay he only took in the hoops game in Xfinity Center.
Following the tour, McCormack sat down with head coach Mark Turgeon and his staff as they went over final preparations for Towson. The Norfolk Academy center said it was “really cool” to watch Turgeon in action breaking down film and explaining how he wanted his team to play and guard the Tigers.
After that, McCormack met strength coach Kyle Tarp, who left a significant impression.
“I liked talking to [Tarp], and what he does to prepare his guys [for the college level] is great. He really gets his guys ready physically,” said McCormack, who suits up for Team Loaded (Va.) on the Adidas circuit. “He was showing us some of the guys he helped, and how their bodies transformed. So that was definitely impressive.
“I also got to meet an academic advisor, and we went over everything Maryland has to offer off the court. Academics is big for me, and Maryland is definitely a great school.”
Finally, McCormack took in the game itself, which Maryland came back to win late, averting an upset. It wasn't quite the atmosphere for the Maryland-Michigan game McCormack saw last year, but the four-star said he enjoyed himself all the same.
“It’s an early season, out of conference, but what I liked is the energy was still great in the gym. The fans showed up, and that shows the level of dedication they have to their team,” McCormack said. “But this year, Maryland has a really young team, but they look good. They’re building great chemistry and I feel like they have a chance to do very well. I like their style and how they play."
When the game ended, McCormack said a staff member showed him a mock dorm of where the players live, which grabbed the Virginia native’s attention. Then, before leaving, McCormack sat down with Turgeon and recruiter Dustin Clark once again.
“The coaches said I’m a big priority, it was good to have me there again, and they need a guy like me because they need big guys. They said I can get early playing there as a freshman,” McCormack said. “They really want me there.
“With Coach Clark, we talk like every two days, and we can talk about anything from family; to hoops; to how recruiting is going; to school; to life. We’re just building up that relationship, and it’s definitely a good one. I love how when we talk, it doesn’t have to be about just basketball or recruiting. It can be about anything, which I like.
“And it’s the same with Coach Turgeon. I don’t talk to him as often as Coach Clark, but he’s a great guy to talk to, and I like that we can talk about a lot of different subjects.”
McCormack said he should be back in College Park at some point, but he’s unsure when he’ll be able to return. Nor is he positive what other programs he’ll be getting to this winter due to his hectic schedule.
So far, McCormack has seen Georgetown, South Carolina, Va Tech, Duke and UNC, in addition to UMD. If possible, he’d like to take in games at UNC, Duke, Kentucky and Texas this winter.
“Right now, I’d say the schools I talk to the most are Maryland, Georgetown, Texas, Duke and Virginia Tech,” McCormack said. “But I can’t really say who I have the best relationships with, because that’s still to be determined. Also, I’m not putting any schools on a pedestal yet or saying one schools is ahead of another. I’m very open to all schools recruiting me right now. I still have a lot of relationships to build and visits to take.”