Take Two: Can Maryland land a top-five in-state player this cycle?
Take Two returns with a daily offering tackling an issue in the college football landscape. Rivals.comNational Recruiting Analyst Adam Gorney lays out the situation and then receives takes from Rivals.com National Recruiting Director Mike Farrell and an expert from the Rivals.com network of team sites or a regional analyst.
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Maryland has not had much success in recent years on the field, but the Terrapins have still had some major wins with in-state recruiting as they’ve landed at least one of the top-five in-state prospects since 2013.
That list includes four-stars Nick Cross and Isaiah Hazel last recruiting cycle, four-star all-purpose back Anthony McFarland, five-star offensive tackle Damian Prince and many others.
That trend could be at risk in the 2020 class, even though first-year coach Mike Locksley has tremendous recruiting ties in the region.
There has been a huge uptick in talent in Maryland this cycle, but players are coming off the board quickly. Five-star defensive end Bryan Bresee recently committed to Clemson and four-star defensive end Demon Clowney picked LSU. Five-star LB Chris Braswell has been committed to Alabama since November.
As the state rankings stand now, that leaves five-star running back Marshawn Lloyd and four-star safety Jordan Toles as the two remaining top-five recruits in the state for Maryland to grab. Can the Terps land one of those two or will a streak dating back to 2013 be snapped this cycle?
FIRST TAKE: ADAM FRIEDMAN, MID-ATLANTIC RECRUITING ANALYST
“There’s a pretty good chance that Maryland could end up with at least one player from the top five in Maryland. As it stands now, Lloyd and Toles are the only two players in the top five who are uncommitted, and the Terps are in great position with both of them.
“Lloyd’s former head coach is Elijah Brooks, and he’s the running backs coach at Maryland right now. Even though Lloyd hasn’t said a ton about Maryland in his interviews - he’s been mainly talking about Georgia, Clemson, some Penn State and some South Carolina - the Terrapins are still in the thick of things with him, and we’ve all seen how Maryland does recruiting DeMatha, especially lately.
“When you talk about Toles he has a million connections to the Maryland program, not only on the football side but the basketball side. He holds an offer from the Terps in both football and basketball, and he’s close with multiple members of the staff there.”
SECOND TAKE: MIKE FARRELL, NATIONAL RECRUITING DIRECTOR
“It’s still early. If you would have asked me that question about Stefon Diggs and his recruitment heading into his senior year I wouldn’t have given Maryland much of a chance, and the Terrapins ended up pulling that out. They do a good job of keeping the local kids interested, and they get a lot of visits out of respect to the local program.
“It’s just one of those things where you’ve had coaching change after coaching change, with Randy Edsall and D.J. Durkin and now Mike Locksley. They’re in their best shape recruiting because of Locksley. Let’s be patient. Let’s see how the rankings shake out in Maryland and see if the Terps can get one. I have a sneaking suspicion between Maryland and D.C., they’ll get somebody really good.”