Defensive end Jaevon Becton (Ocean Lakes/Virginia Beach, Va.) entered the spring evaluation period with mainly lower Division I and FCS offers, but the 6-foot-4, 240-pound three-star has since seen his recruitment expand. Programs like Syracuse, Va Tech, Rutgers, NC State, Wake and Georgia have all come through, and May 12 Maryland's staff anted up.
Becton had been in contact with UMD-area recruiter Chris Beatty, and after the Terps' defensive staff evaluated the recruit's film, the offer was approved.
"Coach Beatty actually came to the school [in early May] and said they'd be evaluating me. Then [May 12] he contacted me and I gave him a call. He told me the offer was on the table. I was very excited," Becton said. "Coach Beatty then asked me if I was coming up to visit soon and I told him, "Yes sir, definitely.' I told him I'd be up later [in May] or in June. I was supposed to go up there before with some of my teammates, but it didn't happen. I'm definitely getting up there now, though."
Becton said he and Beatty have known each other for a good while. Beatty's stomping grounds are in the 757, and Ocean Lakes is a high school he frequents. Thus, most of the recruits, whether they're Terps' targets or not, are familiar with UMD's receivers' coach.
"I've known Coach Beatty since I was in 10th grade. It's been awhile now we've been in touch," Becton said. "I like him as a person and as a recruiter. He's good at his job. We've had some good conversations and I think he's a real good dude. He likes the way I move and play, and was telling me I could play not just defense but some offense for Maryland too. The offer is for defensive end, but he thinks I could play some tight end with how I catch and run. I've done it before, so that would be great (laughs). But Coach Beatty is great and we talk a lot."
Becton has also spoken to a few of his teammates Beatty has helped coax to College Park, Md. In last year's class, Beatty was able to bring in Ocean Lakes standouts Breyon and Brandon Gaddy and athlete Tahj Capehart.
"I know Tahj best, and that's who I talk to," Becton said. "He's said some real good things about Maryland and the coaches there. From what he's said, they just signed a really good class and have some great [recruits] coming in. It's a program on the rise. So it's definitely a program on my radar."
The three-star edge rusher hasn't been to UMD yet, but he has trekked through Clemson, Wake, NC State, UGA and Tennessee. He plans to get to Syracuse, Rutgers, UNC, UVA, Va Tech and Maryland this summer.
"I wouldn't say I have any leaders yet," Becton said. "But I do like the offers I have on the table. Syracuse, Rutgers, Maryland, Va Tech, UGA, UCF... those are all in there. But I'm hearing from some others too like Tennessee, UVA and Temple, which could be offering. So we'll see how that all goes."
Becton said the coaches from Tech, UGA and RU are in closest contact for now.
The three-star's plan is to visit most of his offerees and then form some sort of favorites list by late summer. Then, he wants to take officials to five schools before committing later during the fall.
"Mainly I'm looking for a place that feels like home and is close enough so my family can see me play," Becton said. "And of course a close relationship with the coaches and a good program overall."