A big week for Maryland football recruiting just got a lot bigger: a host of new recruits committed to the Terrapins, with two confirmed and another two rumored. If all four are Terps, that makes it seven commitments in the past five days, a rate Maryland fans aren't used to.
The first of the commitments is Joe Riddle, a running back from Lignanore in Frederick. Riddle's a local sleeper type, unranked on Rivals and 2-stars on both Scout and ESPN. He's an interesting player; despite a not-blazing electronic 40 time, his tape shows him as a home-run, outrun-the-DB back. He runs faster than that 4.8 - remember that electronic timing adds at least .25 seconds, making it more 4.6ish - and, though he wasn't particularly shifty, was quick enough to outrun some DBs, despite not having an angle.
ESPN mentioned in their eval that a move to safety is "likely" for Riddle despite not having experience there. That versatility is a positive, but I'm guessing that he'll stay at RB, at least for now. He's the first commitment there, and I was expecting Edsall to take two or even three at the position. Depth is needed there in a big way, so Riddle will have a chance to stay at his preferred spot.
Next up is AJ Liddell, a WR from Georgia. Liddell broke the news himself on Twitter. He is - surprise! - another sleeper. At 6-2 and 185, Liddell has nice size, though is again unranked on all three services (Rivals, Scout, ESPN). He apparently had a Georgia Tech offer, so at least one other school thought he was good enough for ACC ball. Tape is here. He isn't a blazer and occasionally gets caught from behind, but he's strong enough to run through tackles, is a good leaper - which, in combo with the 6-2 size (just as tall as any current MD receiver save the ineligible Nigel King) will make him a great target - and made a few difficult catches. I'm guessing he'll be a three-star once more services see his tape.
What's more, two more commitments are rumored, from QB/LB Shawn Petty and CB Malcolm Culmer. I use the word "rumored" because I'm yet to see any confirmation, though I don't really doubt either of them. Culmer I'm more inclined to believe: he's not listed on Scout, ESPN, or Rivals, so the lack of an article or mention of his commitment makes sense. He does have a highlight reel, and it looks like he could play either wideout or corner. I was actually really impressed with his strength with the ball; on two of his TD returns, he ran through several tackles, which is unusual for a WR/CB. That same strength should help him match up with bigger, taller WRs if he ends up on the other side of the ball.
Petty, meamwhile, is more well-known, but I'm not convinced entirely that he's committed. He definitely received an offer from Maryland, and it's his first, but a Rivals article published earlier today - after he received the offer, mind you - makes it seem as though no decision has been made. And Petty, who has a very active Twitter and has made several mentions of getting the offer, hasn't said anything about accepting it. So perhaps we wait on that one - maybe there was a misunderstanding of sorts.
Regardless, Edsall and the new staff have been nothing if not active. Most of the commitments, especially recently, are the type that make up the base of the class - a few sleepers, a lot of camp offers, etc. But the commitments from guys like Brigham and Madaras proved that Edsall can land four stars. It'd be nice to land a crown jewel - Eddie Goldman, Stefon Diggs, Cyrus Jones, or Noah Spence - but those are usually the last to decide. Until then, I can live with sleepers.