It was an eye-opening first look at College Park, Md., for junior center Zack Zambrano (American Heritage/Plantation, Fla.)March 5. He and his family flew up for the weekend, giving the 6-foot-3, 290-pound Zambrano a chance to see Navy March 4 and Maryland a day later.
“To be honest, Maryland was great,” said Zambrano who has just the one offer from UMD, which he landed Jan. 7. “It exceeded every expectation. It was definitely an amazing visit. I’d say Maryland is right at the top for me now.”
Zambrano said the highlight of the visit was meeting the staff in person and interacting with them on a personal level. Zambrano specifically mentioned conversations with head coach D.J. Durkin, recruiter Chris Beatty and offensive line coach Tyler Bowen.
“Getting to talk with Coach Durkin was great and getting to meet everyone in person and getting to know them more was a terrific experience. They’re really doing a great job there and building something special at Maryland,” Zambrano said. “They were all great to talk to and really enjoyed our conversations. Coach Bowen seems like a good guy and he’s very passionate about his job, and I have a great relationship with Coach Beatty.
“They expressed they really want me at Maryland and think I’d be a great fit. It’s nice to see for yourself the kind of vibe they’re putting out and just how invested they are in the program and players.”
The Florida center enjoyed touring the campus as well. He said he and his family were thoroughly impressed by what UMD is putting into the school and its grounds.
“The campus is great, and they’re really trying to build everything up. I mean, they’re spending $156 million on the new facilities, and those look amazing,” Zambrano said. “Then I think they’re investing something like $3 billion in the school and campus itself, so that’s really attractive to me. It’s great what they’re planning.”
Zambrano went on to say his parents loved Maryland too and are comfortable with the program. The family should be returning sometime during the fall.
“Me and my parents are already talking about coming back. We’re coming back at least one more time, definitely,” Zambrano said.
As of now, Zambrano has no other trips planned, although he could venture out during spring break. Zambrano is receiving interest from UConn and Princeton, so if either ante up he could attempt to see those schools.
In terms of his recruiting timeline, Zambrano said he hasn’t thought much about it.
“I’m not really sure yet when I want to commit,” he said. “It could be anytime when I feel it’s right.”