Evan Gregory

TTDave's Inside The Shell

Welcome to our next edition of Inside the Shell, the weekly Maryland football-recruiting roundup.

Welcome to our next edition of Inside the Shell, the weekly Maryland football-recruiting roundup.

Offensive Recruiting Notes

-- Woodson (Washington, D.C.) running back Mychale Salahuddin was in College Park, Md., April 17 and should be in attendance for the April 22 spring game as well. The three-star runner has repeatedly praised the Terps, recruiter Aazaar Abdul-Rahim and the chance to represent the hometown school at the next level. He likes UMD’s up-tempo offense, coordinator Walt Bell and running backs coach Anthony Tucker too. Salahuddin isn’t someone who’s going to pop anytime soon, though, as he’s in the midst of exploring his 25-plus offers. Arkansas (running back tradition), Va Tech (outstanding visit), Oklahoma (former teammates on campus), Wisconsin (running back tradition) and UNC (outstanding visit) are all on Salahuddin’s mind for one reason or another. Expect him to wad through the process, take official visits and then end his recruitment during the fall or winter.

-- Princess Anne (Virginia Beach, Va.) receiver Darryl Jones will follow through on his third College Park trip this offseason by attending the spring game April 22. Last week, Jones, who has Maryland sitting No. 1 on his leaderboard, led us to believe he wouldn’t be committing too soon. But it’s possible the 6-3, 175-pounder could be consumed by the Maryland Stadium atmosphere and opt in now. It certainly wouldn’t shock considering Jones went on and on about UMD following his latest foray. He extolled the coaching staff -- namely recruiter Chris Beatty -- the Terps’ offense, and the school’s relative close proximity to his home. Beatty and Co. have been pushing for Jones harder than any other staff, and we think their efforts are going to pay off. We’ll see if Jones elects to jump on the UMD bandwagon April 22, but even if he doesn’t, the Terps are trending. Va Tech, which Jones visited April 15, is thought to be running second. Note: Jones just received an offer from Syracuse April 19, though the Orange likely have a lot of ground to make up on UMD and Tech.

-- Woodson (Washington, D.C.) receiver Ed Hendrix will be in attendance for the Terps' spring game April 22, less than a week after stopping by campus April 17. Hendrix saw the Terps in action at a spring practice, and April 22 he’ll get an even closer look at the offense; wideouts; and position coach Chris Beatty. Hendrix is particularly high on the hometown school, praising recruiter Aazaar Abdul-Rahim; the direction headman DJ Durkin is taking the program; and DMV-to-UMD. He believes he could make an immediate impact at Maryland as well. Hendrix is also considering Va Tech (visited), UNC (visited), Syracuse (visited April 14), Louisville, NC State (visited), and others. He's another recruit who will take officials before ending his recruitment. Maryland is sitting well here, but it's too soon to forecast Hendrix's destination.

-- Friendship Collegiate (Washington, D.C.) receiver Dontay Demus will be back at Maryland for a fourth time this offseason April 22. He was last on campus less than two weeks ago, afterwards hyping the hometown school like he hadn’t before. (Remember, Demus was a bit hesitant when discussing the Terps earlier during the offseason). Demus has taken to the DMV movement, the chance to play with his friends/former teammates in College Park and the staff in general. He has a close bond with recruiter Aazaar Abdul-Rahim and connected with receivers’ coach Chris Beatty during his last stay at UMD. There’s a good chance Demus, who has Maryland as his unstated leader, could pop after the scrimmage. Demus previously said he wanted to explore some of his other options like BC, Rutgers, Temple and maybe Wisconsin, but it’s obvious turtles are on the brain.

-- Oxon Hill (Md.) receiver Daniel George was at West Virginia with his teammates April 18. The four-star does have an offer from the Mountaineers, and he did enjoy himself per our WVU colleagues, but he’s not forecast to Morgantown, W.Va. Remember, the sense is Penn State is the team to beat, followed by Maryland; Va Tech; and then maybe institutions such as WVU; UNC; or NC State. The Terps’ staff might get another crack at the DMV wideout April 22, as George said he thinks he’ll be able to make the spring game. George has close ties to UMD-area recruiter Aazaar Abdul-Rahim and receivers’ coach Chris Beatty, while he likes the other staffers as well. He’s already taken multiple jaunts to College Park, praising the energy around the program; the coaches’ emphasis on staying home; the coming upgrades/renovated dorms; and more. It’ll be tough to top Penn State as long as the situation remains status quo, but we’ll see what George is thinking later during the summer. At any rate, expect him to select a school either late summer or sometime in the fall.

-- Rumson Fairhaven (Rumson, N.J.) tight end Elijah McAllister has finally started venturing out this offseason, and he’s attempting to see College Park at some point later this spring/summer. The three-star is listing the Terps among his most ardent pursuers, alongside Rutgers; Syracuse; Temple; BC; and Pitt. Since the 6-6, 215-pounder is coming off ACL surgery, many of his former big-time offerees have either backed off or are taking a wait-and-see approach. That includes Tennessee, which was McAllister’s projected destination for months. True, McAllister will attempt to renew his national reputation with a standout spring evaluation period, but in the meantime he seems to be taking a closer look at those programs whose coaches have stayed on him. He was back at Rutgers in mid-April, took in Temple around the same time and is in the process of setting more trips. There’s a better-than-average chance UMD tight ends coach Pete Lembo and recruiter Matt Barnes can coax him down to College Park.

-- Mays (Atlanta, Ga.) tight end Maleak Bryant has been on pop watch ever since he declared Maryland the “team to beat” following his April 4 trek through College Park. That remains the case, but Bryant isn’t quite as close to committing as he let on post-visit. Bryant is scheduling a Tennessee trip for the near future since the Vols’ staff has shown interest, while his Iowa State jaunt is set for June 8. Recall, the Cyclones’ coaches are attempting to sell Bryant and his teammate, receiver Amir Abdur-Rahman, on playing together in Ames, Ia. -- which is particularly attractive to the two good friends. Abdur-Rahman has a Terps’ offer, but he may not be a main priority with so many other wideouts on the UMD staff’s board. Maybe that will eventually change, but at this juncture Bryant and Abdur-Rahman seem intent on checking out Iowa State together and at least seeing what materializes during the evaluation period.

-- Archbishop Wood (Warminster, Pa.) tight end Kyle Pitts landed an Alabama offer April 14 and Ohio State April 19. Do we need to say more? His recruitment has reached another level, and we figure he’s going to end up at either PSU, Florida, Oklahoma, Bama, Tennessee, OSU or maybe Va Tech. Maryland is in the running, and Pitts was in College Park recently, but we don’t see the Terps trumping the bigwigs. Pitts has been starry-eyed for awhile, and the Bama and Ohio State offers have solidified his status as a national recruit.

-- Lackawanna (Scranton, Pa.) offensive tackle T.J. Bradley made it down to Maryland April 14, a little less than a month after pulling a Terps’ offer. The 6-9, 290-pound junior college recruit said he had a “great” initial look at College Park and has the Terps under principle consideration. The Leesburg, Va., native, who prepped at Tuscarora High (Leesburg, Va.), formed an instant connection with line coach Tyler Bowen; offensive coordinator Walt Bell; and head coach D.J. Durkin. He said Durkin’s personality and message hit home (literally, since the headman harped on the fact Leesburg is just 45 minutes from College Park), while he loved interacting with the young, relatable Bowen. Bradley praised the facility upgrades, Maryland Stadium, the Under Armour gear, the academics and the school’s location too. Plus, the big tackle thinks he could step in and contribute at tackle-needy UMD. Now, Bradley does have a growing offer list that currently consists of Minnesota, Syracuse, WVU and UMD, with more to come, so we’ll have to see what he’s thinking down the line. It’s possible the 6-9 man-mountain will earn looks from some top-level programs, which he admitted could change his situation. (Bradley said he dreamed of playing in the SEC.) But for now we like the inroads the Terps’ staff has made, with the main selling point being that Bradley’s mother, who the tackle is particularly close to, could easily attend his home games. You can read more about Bradley HERE.

-- Gonzaga (Washington, D.C.) offensive tackle Aidan Rafferty was at Maryland for the second time in a week April 17, and he’s pining to hit the spring game April 22 as well. The latest trip wasn’t much different than before per se -- he and his parents interacted with the coaches, saw the team practice, and learned about the academics – but it’s another indication the Terps may be trending here. True, Rafferty insists he’s not going to commit until he can see some further-out locales during the summer (i.e. Pitt, NC State, BC, Indiana, maybe Arizona), but this recruitment should still come down to Maryland or Virginia Tech. Rafferty was back in Blacksburg, Va., April 11 and loves the direction headman Justin Fuente is taking the program. But our gut is the Terps may have the inside track heading into the summer months -- especially if the Gonzaga lineman returns to College Park April 22. Look for Rafferty to finally choose his destination sometime later in July or August.

-- Imhotep (Philadelphia, Pa.) offensive tackle Justin Johnson was in College Park April 14, and he’s trying to head back for a third time this offseason April 22. This is a recruit who we’re putting on surefire pop watch heading into the spring game trip (even if he doesn’t physically make it). Johnson is already very high on the Terps after two forays through campus, and the third time could be the charm. The 6-7, 345-pounder has connected with line coach Tyler Bowen, recruiter Anthony Tucker and headman D.J. Durkin, appreciating their ardent pursuit. He believes he could develop steadily under Bowen’s watch and potentially contribute early during his career. Speaking of Bowen, Johnson enjoyed watching the line coach and the rest of the Maryland staff and players in action April 14, talking up the practice’s up-tempo pace. Johnson, an education-oriented recruit, likes the school’s academic reputation and various degree opportunities too. The campus’s location near home and Washington, D.C., the pending facility upgrades and the renovated dorms have his attention too. It only helps the UMD staff’s chances at landing Johnson that many of his other suitors aren’t pushing in earnest. “I really can’t say at the moment,” Johnson said when asked if he was ready to pop. “But I will say that I have been talking a lot to my former teammate, DJ Moore, who is there. I didn’t have a chance to play with DJ, but I can relate to him, and what he’s been saying has opened my eyes. He’s a good reference for me and can tell it like it is. It’s like he’s a role model for me, because he understands where I’m coming from. And, also, it’s a really good experience down there at Maryland, and it’s close so I can get there a lot. Maryland has a lot going for it.” We don’t like to use the term “lock,” but this one is looking pretty good for UMD purposes. You can read more about Johnson HERE.

-- St. Ignatius (Cleveland, Ohio) offensive tackle Darian Kinnard added a potentially game-changing offer from Penn State April 17. Kinnard was thrilled with the Nittany Lions’ look and wants to see the school this summer. Another program that’s caught Kinnard’s eye is UCLA, which he’d like to fly out to in the next couple months. The three-star also said he wanted to hit Pitt and Maryland during his trek to the East Coast. Both the Panthers’ and Terps’ coaches have been after Kinnard in earnest, and he’ll honor their efforts with a visit to each. Kinnard, who pulled a Terps’ offer in January, has been in contact with UMD-area recruiter Andy Buh and line coach Tyler Bowen. He’s intrigued by the program’s direction, standout academics and Big Ten affiliation. But Kinnard is taking the process very deliberately. He hasn’t ventured out to any locales this offseason due to winter/spring sports and won’t do so until he gauges which programs’ coaches truly covet his services.

-- North Point (Waldorf, Md.) offensive tackle Rasheed Walker released his top-six favorites list, but there were zero surprises with the selection of Ohio State; Penn State; UNC; Va Tech; Maryland; and Rutgers. (OK, so RU really isn’t a threat here, but the first five are in play). The four-star has a close eye on the Nittany Lions, who could have a bead following Walker’s treks to State College, Pa. He’s also taken a liking to the Hokies after a trip to Tech. The Terps are in play here due to Walker’s relationship with recruiter Aazaar Abdul-Rahim, but may be trailing a couple suitors in the pecking order at this juncture. Walker will not be in College Park for the spring game April 22.

-- DeMatha (Hyattsville, Md.) offensive guard Evan Gregory returned to Maryland yet again April 15. He didn't respond to inquiries this time around, but the sense is the Terps are trending in a major way for the four-star. Gregory had a chance to watch UMD practice, connect with line coach Tyler Bowen and chat up area recruiter Aazaar Abdul-Rahim. The DeMatha product has a tight-knit bond with the entire Maryland staff and counts them as some of his favorite coaches. Moreover, he's keen on joining former teammates Marcus Minor and Terrance Davis is College Park. If that weren’t enough, Gregory will be returning to UMD for the spring game April 22. Publically, Gregory says he’s still looking at Rutgers (visited), WVU (visited), UVA (visited) and Syracuse (visited), and he wants to see what offers come to fruition during the evaluation period, but he's probably Maryland's to lose. In fact, we could see him popping April 22, although he might be inclined to hold out just a bit longer into the spring.

-- Butler Area (Pa.) offensive guard Jake Kradel keeps adding offers, and this week he pulled Va Tech after visiting Blacksburg and UCLA. The new verbals aren’t likely to alter Kradel’s recruitment, however. Ohio State, should the staff keep pushing, has the upper-hand, followed by Pittsburgh. Maryland, which has hosted Kradel twice, is probably sitting third.

Defensive Recruiting Notes

-- St. Frances (Baltimore, Md.) defensive end Eyabi Anoma visited Alabama during his spring break and had planned to make it out to Southern California. It’s not entirely clear if the latter trip came to fruition, but we don’t envision Anoma playing on the West Coast anyway. The Tuscaloosa, Ala., foray is worth noting, however. Anoma had been eager to visit the Tide ever since pulling the offer, counting Bama as an instant contender. Now, after seeing the school firsthand, it’s an even more enticing option for the four-star. Of course, Anoma is in no rush to commit. He’s going to take his recruitment deliberately, exploring new options; listening to multiple pitches; and the like. But it’s fairly certain that both Alabama (should the staff push) and Maryland, which Anoma has already taken in a few times this offseason, will remain in play throughout. Penn State figures to be a prime contender too after Anoma’s trek to Happy Valley, and others in the mix include Michigan; Clemson; and maybe Florida, Ole Miss and Georgia. The Terps are going to be there due to Anoma’s tight rapport with recruiter Brawley Evans and  Jimmy Brumbaugh, the fact his former teammate B’ahmad Miller is in College Park, and due to his affinity for the hometown movement.

-- DeMatha (Hyattsville, Md.) defensive tackle Austin Fontaine will be returning to Maryland April 22. Fontaine hasn’t been in College Park quite as often as some of his teammates, mostly because of track season, but the four-star is no stranger to the Terps. He’s in regular communication with recruiter Aazaar Abdul-Rahim, has met defensive line coach Jimmy Brumbaugh, and likes headman D.J. Durkin and his message. In particular, the DMV-to-UMD mantra; continuing the DeMatha-to-UMD pipeline; and taking advantage of the opportunity to show out for your hometown school. Fontaine isn’t exactly the Terps’ to lose, though. He has a close eye on Ohio State, which he’s been to this offseason, and wouldn’t mind playing for coach Larry Johnson. Penn State is another program whose coaches have Fontaine’s ear. So although we believe the Maryland staff has a better-than-average chance to bring the four-star in, we can’t predict him to College Park yet. Fontaine’s recruitment, which won’t end anytime soon, is bound to ebb and flow through the summer; fall; and into the winter.

-- Dominion (Sterling, Va.) defensive tackle Jayde Pierre is attempting to make it back to College Park for the spring game April 22. He was last at Maryland in February, speaking highly of the program and all it had to offer. Pierre has been talking to UMD defensive line coach Jimmy Brumbaugh ever since, with the two developing a good relationship. The question is, Will the Terps’ staff push for a pledge with other defensive line option available? Maybe so down the line, but the current feeling is if the Maryland coaches were truly pressing, Pierre would be on board already. Besides UMD, the Sterling native likes UVA a good deal and should be revisiting Charlottesville, Va., soon. The only other program’s coaches who have offered are Purdue’s, though Pierre could pick up another verbal or two this spring.

-- DeMatha (Hyattsville, Md.) BUCK John Morgan returned to Virginia Tech April 14. It was a significant trip because the Hokies and Terps are probably running neck and neck for the three-star DMV recruit. (Remember, Penn State’s staff isn’t making a push). Morgan, as expected, lauded his latest Blacksburg foray, praising the coaches; the team’s practice; and the vibe surrounding the program. The DeMatha edge rusher may give the Hokies yet another look later during the summer and surely during the fall as well. But the Terps continue to trend here and may hold a slight edge. Maryland’s staff, with assistant Aazaar Abdul-Rahim running point, have made a potent pitch that Morgan’s taken to. He’s keen on DMV-to-UMD, joining his former teammates in College Park and playing for a defensive-minded head coach like D.J. Durkin. Morgan has already been on campus several times this offseason – his latest trip for a spring practice likely solidified UMD’s position as a top suitor -- and he should be back in town April 22 for the spring game.

-- Woodson (D.C.) inside linebacker Juan Wallace will hit Maryland’s spring game April 22 with his teammates. He was debating whether or not to head to UMD or Syracuse, another program high on his favorites list, but opted for the hometown Terps. Wallace hasn’t seen Maryland in action yet this spring, so he’s taking the opportunity to do so. Wallace has been in regular communication with area recruiter Aazaar Abdul-Rahim, likes linebackers coach Matt Barnes and is keen on DMV-to-UMD. The local backer knows numerous current/former Terps, including inside linebacker Jermaine Carter, and wouldn’t mind following in their footsteps. Wallace is taking a close look at Syracuse, which he just saw last weekend, however, and Duke is resonating too. The Woodson three-star will likely choose between one of that trio later during the summer -- unless more offers come in that alter his thinking.

-- Christiansburg (Christchurch, Va.) inside linebacker Jamar Darboe is returning to his No. 1 suitor, Maryland, April 22. Darboe has already trekked up to College Park multiple times this offseason and is excited to watch the spring game. He loves the Terps’ coaching staff and defense, believing the scheme would fit him perfectly. The school’s academics, the university’s close proximity to home, and the Big Ten affiliation also have Darboe smitten. About the only reason he hasn’t committed yet is probably because he’s not an immediate “take” for head coach D.J. Durkin. He’s going to remain in contact with UMD linebackers’ coach Matt Barnes, but a true push may not materialize unless some other options fall by the wayside.

-- Calvert Hall (Towson, Md.) outside linebacker Chance Campbell should be in College Park for the first time since the winter April 22. The local backer has been consumed by lacrosse, so he hasn’t been able to get out much (he saw Rutgers and Pitt back in March), but said he’s trying his best to make the Terps’ scrimmage. Maryland has been in a strong spot for the 6-2, 222-pounder since offering a few months ago. Linebackers coach Matt Barnes has stayed in touch since then, and the two have a solid rapport. Campbell does want to look at some of his other options before choosing his destination, though. Duke, whose staff anted up April 7, Virginia, and BC are all of prime interest since they’re all renowned academic schools. We’d expect Campbell to visit at least two of the three before making any kind of college decision.

-- Mill Creek (Hoschton, Ga.) outside linebacker Shaka Heyward picked up four new offers this week from Rutgers, Wake, Minnesota and Iowa State. He previously had looks from Maryland, Ole Miss and a couple lower Division-I programs. The 6-3, 215-pound Heyward could add another from Georgia Tech when he visits April 22. At the moment, Heyward is keeping an open mind about his recruitment until his full offer list is realized and he can determine which programs truly want him. He is in contact with Maryland-area recruiter Walt Bell and linebackers coach Matt Barnes and would like to check out College Park, along with some of his most recent suitors. If Heyward blows up this spring and adds more SEC looks, however, he’ll probably stick in the south.

-- Vineland Senior (N.J.) safety Isaih Pacheco took in Maryland April 12, a day before his teammate, Nihym Anderson, popped to the Terps. We spoke to the 5-11, 195-pound three-star to gauge his thoughts on both his College Park jaunt and Anderson, and Pacheco commented on both. The Jersey prospect said his teammate made a great choice in UMD and that Anderson has already started talking to him about Maryland. Pacheco is listening too, acknowledging he’s interested in continuing his football career alongside the latest Terps’ pledge. Furthermore, Pacheco had a great time in College Park April 12, noting the intense practice and the welcoming coaches. Pacheco stopped short of calling UMD a leader, but the Terps seem to be positioned well for the Vineland recruit. Hometown Rutgers, which Pacheco has taken in a couple times, is also a prime contender, along with Pitt; Syracuse; and BC.

-- Roosevelt (Greenbelt, Md.) safety Ray Boone is hitting Virginia Tech April 22 rather than head to Maryland’s spring game the same day. That shouldn’t be taken as a slight on the Terps, although it does sound like Boone is fairly interested in the Hokies -- and vice versa. We’re going to continue projecting Boone to College Park until we hear otherwise, however. Truth be told, he’s already seen pretty much all UMD has to offer, including taking in a practice earlier in April, so it’s not like he’s missing out. Boone has always said he wanted to at least check out a couple other locales, so this is an opportunity to gauge Tech. We’ll see if the trip changes his thinking afterwards.

-- Woodbridge (Va.) safety DaShaun Jerkins made good on a promise to reschedule his reneged UMD trips, making it to College Park April 18. Afterwards, Jerkins had naught but praise Maryland, which he’d previously seen for a game and a winter campus visit. He lauded the welcoming, passionate coaches; the intense practice; the various aesthetics around campus (i.e. player dorms, facility upgrades, renovated weight room); the academics; and the school’s location near home and Washington, D.C. Jerkins chatted up position coach Aazaar Abdul-Rahim, recruiter Chris Beatty and head coach D.J. Durkin, all of whom he connected with. “They all said they love how I play, they love how I come downhill and cover, and how they would love for me to come there,” Jerkins said. “I liked what they were saying; they made me feel wanted. Coach Beatty and I, we’re real close. He’s a guy I can talk to about anything and has known me for a long time. He can help me with anything I have questions about. And Coach Aazaar, I can tell he’s a great coach. Just talking to him and the other coaches, they could make me both a better player and a better man.” So, what’s our gut here? Well, North Carolina is no longer the leader since the UNC coaches have other targets on their board. That means Maryland’s staff has a real chance to vault up the totem pole here. Louisville, Vandy, NC State and Wake are also under consideration, and it sounds like the Terps reside in the upper half of that list. Jerkins is willing to wait things out, so his situation could change, but we’re more optimistic about UMD’s chances than a week ago. You can read more about Jerkins HERE.

-- DeMatha (Hyattsville, Md.) cornerback Judson Tallandier took in a Maryland practice April 14, and he could be back April 22. The 6-2, 180-pounder didn’t offer extensive comments after his mid-April trip, but he let one he had another standout stay in College Park. Tallandier, who saw the Terps practice for the first time, has a great relationship with recruiter/position coach Aazaar Abdul-Rahim; likes the idea of continuing the DeMatha-to-Maryland pipeline; and representing his home school at the next level. Tallandier isn’t ready to commit just yet -- he’s looking at Syracuse, Pitt, NC State, Rutgers, BC, Wake, Temple and Arizona (his former teammate is in Tucson, Ariz.) – but we’re very encouraged by Maryland’s spot here. (Tallandier took in Ohio State April 15, but the Buckeyes’ staff isn’t likely to offer the DeMatha three-star).

-- Dudley (Greensboro, N.C.) corner D.J. Crossen is supposed to visit Maryland April 22 at the behest of UMD-area recruiter Pete Lembo and position coach Aazaar Abdul-Rahim. The two have been pushing for the three-star and seem to have his attention. Crossen knows he could potentially shine early in College Park, which is one of the reasons he’s checking the school out. But the Greensboro native recently returned to Virginia Tech, which is the likely leader, and also took in Florida State. Crossen has plans to see some other SEC schools too, with South Carolina and Tennessee on his radar. Therefore, the Maryland staff is going to have to wow the three-star to draw him north for college. He’s not going above “cool” on the hot board unless he comes back to College Park down the road.

-- Woodson (Washington, D.C.) cornerback Noah Boykin visited Syracuse April 15, was at Maryland April 17 and will be back at Maryland April 22. It will be Boykin's fourth trip to College Park this offseason and his second time seeing the Terps in action. The three-star loves position coach/recruiter Aazaar Abdul-Rahim, the DMV movement and the chance to show out in front of friends and family. Boykin knows he could play early during his career in College Park as well. Thus, he's going to keep UMD firmly in play, but likely isn't choosing a school until later during the fall. Boykin wants to take official visits during the season, pick his destination after that, and then graduate early. Some of the schools he'll be taking a close look at are North Carolina (had an outstanding stay in Chapel Hill, N.C.), NC State (visited, has close connection with the staff), Va Tech (visited, loves defensive reputation), Oklahoma (setting visit, teammates-turned-Sooners Parnell Motley and Abdul Adams are there), Clemson (loved his visit and Tigers national reputation) and possibly more. We like where UMD stands, but we can't project Boykin to College Park before knowing how his officials unfold. 

-- Coatesville (Pa.) cornerback Avery Young and his 2019 younger brother Aaron Young saw Maryland for the first time this offseason April 13. The two were last in College Park during the fall and had been wanting to return since pulling an offer in the winter. Avery Young said he and his brother had a standout visit, mentioning the Terps’ energetic practice; their interactions with defensive backs coach Aazaar Abdul-Rahim; and their conversations with head coach D.J. Durkin. They extoled the facility upgrades, campus and academics too. Avery Young, who has primarily had contact with Abdul-Rahim, said he and his sibling should be heading back to Maryland for another look tin the fall. “I could really see myself playing there and playing early,” Young said. “I really like what I’m seeing at Maryland.” But Young didn’t exactly call UMD a leader; he’s keeping an open mind and said he won’t be popping to any school in the near future. He’s receiving interest from numerous programs (Notre Dame first and foremost) and would like to examine all verbals that may materialize. Additionally, two current offerees, Rutgers and Syracuse, are in mind after the Youngses trek through each.  You can read more about Young HERE.

-- Wise (Upper Marlboro, Md.) cornerback A.J. Lytton officially released his top-five favorites list, but there really isn’t much to report here. Florida State, Bama, Clemson, PSU and Maryland were included, which is basically the schools we’d be mentioning in conjunction with the four-star anyway. The Terps and area recruiter Aazaar Abdul-Rahim have done all they can here, including hosting Lytton in mid-April, but it’s going to be tough to climb five spots on the leaderboard before it’s all said and done. But there is time; Lytton isn’t committing until after he takes official visits.

April 22 Spring Game Visitors

RB Mychale Salahuddin (Woodson): Discussed above

WR Dontay Demus (FCA): Discussed above

WR Daniel George (Oxon Hill): Discussed above

WR Ed Hendrix (Woodson): Discussed above

WR: Armani Chatman (Bayside/Virginia Beach, Va.): See last week’s Shell HERE.

WR Sean Ryan (Erasmus Hall/Brooklyn, N.Y.): See last week’s Shell HERE.

WR Darryl Jones (Princess Anne): Discussed above

WR Robert Mayo (Freedom/Chantilly, Va.): See last week’s Shell HERE.

OL Aidan Rafferty (Gonzaga): Discussed above

OL Evan Gregory (DeMatha): Discussed above

DL Austin Fontaine (DeMatha): Discussed above

DE Joseph Boletepeli (Millbrook/Raleigh, N.C.): See last week’s Shell HERE.

BUCK John Morgan (DeMatha): Discussed above

ILB Juan Wallace (Woodson): Discussed above

ILB Nick DeNucci (Pope John XXIII/Sparta, N.J.): See last week’s Shell HERE.

ILB Jamar Darboe (Christiansburg): Discussed above

OLB Chance Campbell (Calvert Hall): Discussed above

CB Noah Boykin (Woodson): Discussed above

CB Vincent Flythe (Woodson): See last week’s Shell HERE.

CB D.J. Crossen (Dudley): Discussed above

CB Judson Tallandier (DeMatha): Discussed above

CB A.J. Lytton (Wise/Upper Marlboro, Md.): Discussed above

New Offers Out

Zamar Wise, QB, Barringer (Newark, N.J.) (2019): The Maryland staff officially offered the dual-threat Wise as an “athlete” and tentatively as a quarterback April 19. Per the 2019 signal-caller’s coach, UMD-area recruiter Matt Barnes let on the Terps’ coaches loved Wise’s athleticism and game, and believe he’d fit well into their spread offense. But before UMD offensive coordinator Walt Bell begins pursuing Wise as a quarterback, he does want to see him throw first.

Either way, it was the very first verbal for the 6-2, 185-pounder, and apparently he was “very excited,” according to Barringer coach Ronly London.

“When I initially got the message from Coach Barnes, I let Zamar listen to the voicemail. He was like, ‘Wow, I like Maryland, I was hoping for Maryland,’” London said. “I had no idea he liked Maryland that much or how he knew about Maryland, but he was pumped when the offer was from [the Terps]. So he should be calling Coach Barnes soon to find out more. [Wise] is excited to get down there for the spring game [April 22].”

Wise, who could also play receiver or defensive back, is also on the radar of Notre Dame, UNC, Kentucky, Baylor, Michigan State, Va Tech, Temple and Rutgers. He’s been to RU and Temple, and will get his first taste of College Park for the spring game.

The Terps did well to get involved early here, but it’s way too soon to give any credence to London’s comments about his quarterback’s initial interest. We’ll have to see how much Wise’s recruiting profile expands, what visits he takes, and what schools’ coaches choose to purse him as a quarterback as opposed to an athlete.

You can read more about Wise HERE.

Cartavious Bigsby, ATH, Callaway (Hogansville, Ga.) (2020): Bigsby is a future five-star athlete, who already has about a dozen offers to his name. The 5-11, 185-pounder pulled in Alabama, Auburn, Michigan, South Carolina, Tennessee, Ole Miss, Florida, UNC, Kentucky, Michigan State and Minnesota prior to the UMD staff’s verbal April 18.

Off The Board

Kendrick Torain, S, Jesuit (Tampa, Fla.): The safety/receiver Torain landed an Auburn offer recently and told our colleagues the Tigers had his eye. Torain then reported what we already assumed: Most of the programs on his mind were those in the SEC or well south of the Mason Dixon Line. Tennessee, Georgia, UNC and Duke are on the brain. He made no mention of Maryland or a possible College Park foray.


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