The Terps hosted one of their foremost tight end targets April 4, and after seeing College Park, Md., for the first time, Maleak Bryant has Maryland trending. The Mays High (Atlanta, Ga.) product flew up from the Peach State with his teammate, UMD receiver offeree Amir Abdur-Rahman, and proceeded to call UMD his top suitor following a eight-hour stay.
“You could say Maryland is the leader right now, and I am thinking about a verbal commitment in the next couple weeks,” said the 6-foot-6, 215-pound Bryant, who has offers from UMD, Iowa State, Rutgers, ECU, Georgia State and a couple others. “I really loved Maryland and I could see myself going there. It left a big impression on me.”
Bryant proceeded to call each phase of his extended visit a highlight. He thoroughly enjoyed touring the school, seeing the player dorms, checking out the coming facility upgrades, learning about the academics, watching Maryland practice and interacting with the coaches.
It was the latter, though, that has Bryant seriously considering playing his college ball in College Park.
“Everyone at Maryland made me feel wanted. I talked to like every offensive coach there and the head coach, Coach [D.J.] Durkin,” Bryant said. “Coach [Walt] Bell, Coach [Pete] Lembo, Coach [Chris] Beatty, I met them all. They were all saying how they need a big, athletic tight end like me, because they don’t really have that right now. They made me feel needed there, and I loved that.
“Also, I have a great relationship with Coach Lembo. Me and him, we talk like every day. He’s been trying to get me up there for awhile now and has really been pushing for me.”
Bryant found Maryland’s spread offense enticing after watching the team practice too. He paid attention to how Bell utilized the tight ends and believes he could step in and make an impact.
“Just from watching the team, they kind of run the same offense we do at Mays. It’s fast, they spread the ball around and they use their receivers,” Bryant said. “They have some good tight ends there now, but it does look like they could use a field-stretching type of guy.”
The Mays product went on to talk up UMD’s aesthetic qualities. He said the campus, dorms, facilities and more all grabbed his attention.
“I loved walking around there, and how everything you need is right there for you,” Bryant said. “It’s a beautiful place, and I love how D.C. is there too. There’s a lot to around there, and being near D.C. is great. And the dorms are huge. Of all the colleges I’ve seen, those are the nicest ones. The new facilities they’re putting in, those are going to be sweet too. Maryland really looks great.”
Finally, Bryant addressed his meeting with the academic advisors. He wants to major in communications, which UMD specializes in.
“Maryland is one of the best programs in the country for what I want to get into,” Bryant said. “All the connections they have, the internships, it’s a great opportunity.”
Bryant said the one other school he wants to check out is Iowa State. He might visit the Cyclones in the next week or two. Other than ISU, though, Bryant’s mind is on Maryland.
“And it’s possible me and Amir play together in college,” Bryant said. “He was up here too and really liked Maryland a lot. We do have to do what’s best for each of us, but we are like a tandem. It would be cool to stick together.”