By Todd Carton –
After a rough start, Saturday became a very good day for Coach D. J. Durkin and the Maryland football program as the Terps picked up three new commits for the class of 2017.
The day started with some difficult news when Florida safety Tyrek Tisdale announced that he would not enroll at Maryland this fall due to “health issues in my family.” Tidale told Inside Maryland Sports that he hopes to enroll in January. Everyone associated with the Maryland program wishes him the best and hopes for his entry to College Park in the near future.
Shortly after Tisdale’s announcement, the day turned a bit brighter when Gonzaga High School center Johnny Jordan committed to Maryland. The 6 foot 2 inch 295 pound Jordan is considered the 14th best center nationally is the number eight player in DC. He becomes the first Terrapin recruit from Gonzaga since AJ Francis came to College Park in 2008. Jordan will fill a position of need for Maryland because the only true center currently on the roster is sophomore Brendan Moore. You can see highlights from Jordan’s junior year here. Jordan becomes the third top 10 player from Washington to commit to the Terps.
The next two players who committed will line up in the backfield. Local back Tayon Fleet-Davis announced his commitment in the middle of the afternoon. He joins cornerback Deon Jones as the second player in the 2017 class from Potomac High School in Oxon Hill. Fleet-Davis, whose junior season highlights are here, is listed at 6 feet one inch and 210 pounds. He’s ranked nationally as the 38th best running back and as the number 18 player in Maryland is the fifth player from the top 20 in the state to commit to Maryland’s 2017 class.
North Carolina running back Javon Leake capped the day as the highest ranked of the three star recruits who committed. According to 247 Sports, Leake is the sixth best all-purpose back in the country and the 17th best player in his home state. You can watch highlights from his junior season here. At six feet one inch and 195 pounds, the versatile back should be another important and durable cog in Offensive Coordinator Walt Bell’s system.
In his last year at Arkansas State, Bell saw two backs carry the ball at least 100 times while a third picked up 99 carries. The three backs combined for more than 2,300 yards rushing. With both Trey Edmunds and Wes Brown in their final year of eligibility, both freshmen could compete for early playing time in College Park.
The weekend actually started with Friday’s commitment of place kicker Jonathan Doerer. Doerer, who kicks for South Mecklenberg High in Charlotte, NC is currently unranked according to 247Sports.com. This is likely to change now that he has a scholarship from a Power 5 program. Still, with 15 commits, one of whom is unrated, Maryland’s class now ranks as the 16th best in the country and trails only Ohio State and Michigan in the Big Ten.
The Terps are among the top schools under consideration for a number of other high profile recruits. If Durkin and company can show some on field success and continue to work their magic on the recruiting trail, the future of Maryland football will be very bright indeed.