The Sleeper: Matt Furstenburg

It's rare that the Terps are the first—and only—team to offer a recruit. Most potential commits with an offer from the Terps have offers from Virginia, Illinois or Penn State. The Terps found a potential diamond in the rough in tight end commit Matt Furstenburg, a 6-foot-4, 220-pound blocker who committed over the summer and recently enrolled to College Park, where he is already taking class.

Furstenburg took the post-graduate route after his original recruitment left something to be desired. With a college-ready size and more than impressive 40-yard dash of 4.52 seconds, he was certainly flying under the radar.

"I just had offers from D-1AA teams, and that was it, really. New Hampshire [offered]," Furstenburg said.

He headed to The Hun School of Princeton in New Jersey, home of Florida State safety standout Myron Rolle, to continue his studies and mature, as well as to "increase exposure," he said. Grades were not an issue with Furstenburg—he simply felt undervalued by major college football programs.

If it wasn't for Furstenburg's undying love for football, he could have gotten a full ride to play lacrosse. The two-sport star was recruited—and offered—by his favorite school growing up, Rutgers, and was hearing interest from Johns Hopkins and Virginia as well. His lacrosse days are over, however, despite Maryland's tradition with the sport.

As a senior in high school, Furstenburg heard from the Terps' quarterbacks coach John Donovan, but an offer never came through. An injury sidelined him for five weeks in the beginning of the season, significantly slowing down his recruitment.

"I came to Maryland's camp my junior year, and they talked to me the whole summer. They talked about offering, and said they wanted to see my senior year. I got hurt and said I was going to prep a year, so they offered me that summer," he explained.

While many collegiate prospects flourish at preparatory school, Furstenburg's recruitment plugged along slowly but surely. Before actually enrolling at Hun School, he got his offer from the Terps, but maintained his commitment to prepare for college for a semester. The decision to follow through with prep school, he said, was not one that he regrets.

"I matured, and got a chance to grow up a little bit. I was pretty young for my grade and it gave me an extra year to play. It helped me out tremendously football-wise," he said.

After signing with the Terps shortly after receiving his scholarship offer and playing for Hun, Furstenburg became more noticed by recruiting services. Scout.com recently bumped up the freshman to a four-star recruit, and the 17th-best post-graduate prospect in the country. The bump put him slightly ahead of heralded Hargrave Military Academy commit Devonte Campbell, another Terp tight end coming in as a freshman.

Despite his pledge to Maryland, other schools took notice of Furstenburg and continued to recruit him. "During the season, North Carolina was talking to me. Same with Pittsburgh, Michigan State and Vanderbilt."

None of those schools came through with an offer after Furstenburg made it apparent that his recruiting days were over. He cited his reasons why College Park drew him in as: "the coaches, the football program, the academics, everything. Location was a part to it. It's not too far from my house."

Without receiving the typical love that a four-star caliber recruit does, he continued on, mild-mannered as always.

"I feel like I was a little underrated, but it doesn't matter to me. I'm going to play the same way I'd normally play," he said.

Scout.com analysts believe that he may be a hidden gem as a blocking tight end with good hands and exceptional speed, all of which could make Matt Furstenburg a real sleeper.


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