The term has been used a lot in conversations about Maryland football since new head coach DJ Durkin stepped on the College Park campus.
As the high-energy leader works to institute the changes necessary for establishing consistent success and prominence in the competitive college sphere, looking beyond just this first upcoming season is key.
And based on the staff’s current strides in the recruiting game, big potential – and lots of local faces – rest on the horizon.
So far, the Terps have received commitments from eleven DMV-area recruits, including five four-stars (247Sports). The fifth is DeMatha offensive lineman Marcus Minor, who’s final decision came down to the Terrapins and the Hurricanes.
“Change of coaching staff and helping, like knowing that they were low with linemen helped me make my decision. I was gonna choose between Maryland and Miami and Maryland felt like home to me,” the 6’2” tackle said.
Minor’s current head coach, Elijah Brooks of DeMatha, said he overhears some of the way these highly-sought-after athletes make their college decisions.
“For a while we didn’t have anyone at Maryland and I continue to tell the coaching staff that once you get one and you have a guy in the locker room saying good things about the University of Maryland, then they’re gonna tell their former teammates who are currently at DeMatha,” Brooks explained. “And before you know it, the players start recruiting each other.”
The chatter also stretches beyond a player’s own school, as the Stag alluded to.
“I’ve talked to a few of their players, few of their other lineman – Jordan McNair (McDonogh) and Johnny Jordan (Gonzaga) and so yeah, just a few of them that I’ve known for a while.”
Like Minor, four-star McNair and three-star Jordan selected the Terps over many of the nation’s other premiere Power Five programs.
Coach Brooks said the value of the area retaining graduated talent cannot be underscored.
“It’s great for us as a high school to have guys who are right down the street playing. We get a chance to stay connected with them…they’re in driving distance, we can go to their games, they can come and visit us…talk to our team when needed.”
As Maryland works to improve on the line and rebound from a series of less-than-stellar seasons (23-39 since 2011), the addition of the DeMatha standout is another stride towards the Terps’ making big visions a reality.
“Marcus is another three-year starter who’s been through the highs and lows of success and failure and he’s gonna bring that fight, that work ethic every day,” the Stags coach said.
While Minor has another year of high school ball – more goals to meet and improvements to make – it’s apparent he’ll rest easy at least when reflecting on his latest decision.
“It’s a good feeling you know, knowing that this is where you’re from and to put your city on your back.”