By Wayne Viener – Holy Cow is football recruiting a hot topic in TerpLand, I know both of the lacrosse teams are headed to the Elite 8 and, well really, we are a basketball school.
With all that, Terp fans in the DMV are raving about what DJ Durkin is doing with recruiting.
You all know the story, Maryland is a sleeping giant. With the right staff and a little $, the Terps could be the “next” college football surprise. I have heard the story since the Len Bias days. There was a glimmer of what could be done with Ralph, but it quickly melted into empty seasons and empty seats.
What Durkin has done so far, yeah I know Maryland has not played a game under this staff, is amazing. Remember that Ralph won with the guys that Vanderlinden brought in. So his success was a surprise. Then we added on the Vernon Davis and Shawn Merrimans of the world.
This staff, with ace recruiters like Chris Beatty and Mike London along with Azar Abdul-Rahim are everywhere. Adding 4 * (that is four star) kids and getting interest from Florida and Georgia kids that were often well beyond our reach. The Terps are sporting a #14 class. Once again, amazing.
I realize that national signing day (NSD) is the first week of February 2017. Kids can change their minds. We are relying on a star system that is often meaningless.
All of these listed negatives are real. And when we were dealing with a limited number of recruits, it was an issue. As the Durkin staff builds the class of 2017, the numbers are in Maryland’s favor. We have an already large group of recruits. I am sure that one or two are going to go elsewhere. In the Randy era, that would have crashed the class. In the Durkin era, we are probably going to poach a recruit or two from another school.
What I have espoused as a “build the team” format is to have consecutive classes of a handful of 4* or 5* recruits. Let them grow into a team and red shirt a few, so that the results after 4 seasons 20 of 40 or so kids that play are star talent.
Durkin, London, etc have short circuited my plan already. And with the high degree of talent, many of the kids will look to play as true freshman.
Big-time football has arrived in College Park, I am ready for it.