Pennridge (Perkasie, Pa.) inside linebacker Nick Tarburton had been hearing from many schools throughout the Big Ten, but none of them were quite ready to ante up for the 2018 recruit. But on Jan. 6, the 6-foot-4, 240-pound Tarburton heard from Maryland’s area recruiter, Pete Lembo, who let on the backer had his very first offer from the Terps.
“It was awesome. It’s like nothing else. I’m just blessed and thankful without a doubt,” Tarburton said. “I was talking to the head coach of my high school, and he was thinking they’d probably offer me, and then I got the call from Coach Lembo. We talked for about five minutes or so, just about everything that was going on. I was honored to hear him say he had an offer for me.”
Tarburton actually knows Lembo quite well. He said UMD’s tight ends coach has been through Pennridge before, while the two personally interacted after a Terps’ game last fall.
“I know Coach Lembo pretty well. He knows my family, my school and I have a good relationship with him. He’s stayed in touch with me pretty regularly. We text here and there, and we connected well at the game,” Tarburton said. “He likes me; he says I’m a big guy at 6-4, 240 and he thinks I can play inside linebacker for them. I have a chance to develop into a D-end down the line, but right now they like me at inside backer. So it was a good conversation we had.”
Tarburton first checked out College Park, Md., for the Terps’ game against Ohio State. He plans to return for a second look in late January or February.
“That was a tough game for Maryland, but I loved the atmosphere and the area, and I love the school too. It’s nice being near D.C. Everything about Maryland I like,” Tarburton said. “It’s a good program, they’re building up, and I actually have a lot of family in Maryland too. So now I’m excited about the opportunity to maybe play for there some day. It’s pretty cool what’s going on down there.”
Besides the Terps, the Pennridge product has heard from coaches from Michigan State, Rutgers, Penn State and other Big Ten schools. He believes now that he has the one offer from Maryland, more will follow through in short order.
“I wouldn’t say I have any offers I’m hoping for, but I definitely grew up watching Penn State,” Tarburton said. “But I’m a huge Maryland fan as well. So we’ll see how it all goes and who decides to come through.”
So far, Tarburton has visited UMD, Michigan State and Pitt. He called all three “awesome” schools and noted there was plenty to like about each.
Tarburton would like to return to each of the aforementioned programs, in addition to Penn State; Temple; Rutgers and other nearby locales.
The Keystone State recruit is coming off a season where he recorded 100-plus tackles and eight sacks.
“I’m a hard hitter, I’m pretty relentless and I have a good motor,” Tarburton said. “I’m always working and trying to help the team get better.”