Maryland added their fifth prospect of the recruiting season when defensive back Pha' Terrell Washington out of Waldorf (Md.) Westlake committed to the Terps over offers from Virginia Tech, Penn State, Florida, North Carolina, Boston College and a host of other schools.
The 6-foot-0, 185-pounder with 4.4-second speed told coach Freidgen of his decision yesterday.
"I talked to coach Friedgen on Saturday and he was pretty happy," he said. "He told me that my commitment was a pretty good thing for him and the whole football staff. It got them all very excited."
The No. 10 prospect in Maryland was drawn to staying in-state for a number of reasons.
"I've always liked Maryland from the start and I just always knew that they would be the best spot for me," he said. "They have a great football program and academic program too. I went to a football camp there the summer after my ninth grade year and I got a feel for all of the coaches. I like them all including coach Banks and Sollazzo. They are funny people and good coaches, but they are also good people with their kids too. I like the atmosphere and everything else as well.
"Finally, I like Maryland's location because it is good for me, my family, friends and coaches to all come and see me play. It means a lot that my parents can come and see me play. So not only can my parents see me on television, but they can watch me play in person. Most of my family lives in this area, so even my grandparents can come too."
Washington will most likely play safety when he joins the Terps as they like his skills for that position.
"The coaches say I'm pretty exciting and I cover the field well," he said. "They also said I can catch the ball and I'm an all-around player."
The safety is happy to have a decision behind him.
"I feel pretty good and now I feel this year I have to show everybody why I'm going to Maryland," he said. "I want to show them why I got my scholarship because a lot of people said this and that about me, but I'll show them."
Was there any reason the prospect didn't want to wait on making a decision?
"I did my research on all the other schools and all-around the one that stood out to me was Maryland," he said. "I didn't want to take the chance and keep waiting and then lose the scholarship."
Washington feels Maryland is on their way back by rebuilding.
"I think they are going to be a pretty good program," he said. "The class they have right now is going to be a good one and though they had a down season last year, I think they'll have a pretty good one this year. Then hopefully by the time I get there they'll be even better."
Washington plans to be in attendance of most of the home games next season though he hasn't announced an official visit yet.
"I'm going to be watching the defensive game and getting a heads up on what kind of defense they run to prepare myself next year."
The prospect accounted for nearly 800 yards of offense and 10 touchdowns. He added 17 tackles, five interceptions and seven deflected passes as he was named first team all-conference and first team all-Southern Maryland.