Don't Disrespect Dargan

Don't disrespect 283-pound defensive lineman Teddy Dargan. After his commitment to Maryland last week, Dargan told TSR he'll work to earn respect on the field. More inside.

Though he shares his name with an NFL Hall of Famer, that wasn’t the biggest coincidence when it came to Milford Mill coach Reggie White and Maryland’s recruitment of his standout defensive lineman, Teddy Dargan. White, a former NFL lineman himself, played for the San Diego Chargers when Maryland coach Ralph Friedgen was the Chargers’ offensive coordinator, and that familiarity helped pave the way toward Dargan’s verbal commitment to the Terps last week.

“It really did [help], because when I met coach Friedgen, he welcomed me with open arms and the whole staff welcomed me with open arms,” said Dargan, a 6-foot-3, 283-pound defensive tackle who is Maryland’s second verbal commitment in the Class of 2008. “By him knowing my coach, it made it easy for me to understand how” Friedgen operates.

Dargan, a second-team all-state selection, has started for Milford Mill since the beginning of his freshman year, posting a combined 16 sacks during his sophomore and junior seasons. He’s played a good deal of tight end as well, which, at 283 pounds, speaks to  his athleticism. He considers himself neither a run-stuffer nor a pass-rusher, but rather both.

“In that system at Maryland, he’ll have no choice but to succeed,” said White, who adds that Dargan may be the most agile and instinctive player on his team.

Dargan also has a mean streak, which is never a bad thing when you’re talking about a lineman. In an interview this fall, he told TSR: "I bring a lot of energy, a lot of anger and aggression … I don't like to be disrespected on my field."

Pitt was the other school to offer Dargan a scholarship, and others such as Tennessee and Kansas State were recruiting him as well before he cut short the process by picking Maryland.

“I felt like it was time to make a commitment and get ready for my senior year, so I had to make a choice,” he said. “I wanted to stay close to home.”

He was most impressed with Friedgen’s focus on academics.

“He looks after his players as players and academically. I like how he’s got that all put together,” Dargan said.

Dargan first popped up on Maryland’s radar when he attended its camp last summer. Ever since, it has seemed increasingly likely he’d become a Terp.  He’s also attempting to recruit Gilman junior lineman Chris Burnett, although the Terps have not traditionally had much luck with the Baltimore private school, and it’s unclear how hard they’re recruiting Burnett.

Dargan will need to stay focused in the classroom in order to make up for some early-career academic doldrums, but is doing well and should be good to go in terms of qualifying, both he and White said.

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