It didn't take long for the newest member of the Maryland Terrapin football family to announce his commitment. Upper Marlboro, Maryland product Devin Butler received a scholarship offer on June 25th and verbally pledged to the Terps on June 28th. Butler, who plays both quarterback and safety for Frederick Douglass, will line up on defense for the Terps and assume a safety position. The recruiting process can be challenging and rigorous for many prospects, and Butler is not an exception to that list.
"It was more of a relief than anything," said Butler on his reaction to receiving the offer. "I've been wanting an offer since my freshman year and when I finally got it, I felt like I earned it."
It's pretty rare for a recruit to commit to a school within three days of receiving an offer, but for Butler, there was no hesitation in his mind on Maryland being the place for him and is even surprised it took him three days to commit.
"After talking with my mom and my coaches, they thought it was a really good idea. I was thinking last night (Saturday night) about how good it would be and how it would benefit me to go to Maryland, and I don't know why I waited so long to be honest."
Butler had many people in his corner helping him make this decision, including one of his first coaches and Godfather Garland McNeal.
"He's one of my first coaches and also a huge help to my family. He's helped me make all my decisions."
The DMVtoUMD movement mostly gets brought up when talking about the elite local talent, but for recruits that fans may not know much about, it still serves as a meaningful purpose. There is a tremendous amount of state pride within Maryland, and Butler exemplifies that to the fullest.
"I'm Maryland born, so I have Maryland in my blood," he said. "I want to see everyone who is capable to come to my games and watch me play, and I especially want my mom on the sideline."
The 6'3, 190-pound safety sees plenty of opportunity in the secondary by the time he steps onto campus, but also relishes the fact of getting involved with Maryland's prestigious academic programs - specifically the Criminology department.
"Career wise, (Maryland) has the No. 1 criminology department, and that's what I really wanted to study and major in. (The coaching staff) was more focused on me getting my grades straight than anything else because they didn't offer me until I got my grades together and that's what I really like about them."
On the field, there could be an ample amount of playing time for Butler, as both Anthony Nixon and AJ Hendy will have exhausted their collegiate eligibility. Coach Edsall isn't one to shy away from using true freshmen on the two-deep depth chart, especially in an area of need.
"I had some one-on-one time with (defensive backs coach Darrell Perkins). It went really well. That was the day I got the offer. We haven't discussed a plan for me just yet. With all of the safeties leaving, I think that I do have a chance of playing next year."
Butler, the 117th-ranked athlete and 33rd-ranked player in the state of Maryland, according to the247Sports composite, knows there is a way to go in order to make a smooth transition into college, but offers some positives about his skill set that Terps fans can appreciate.
"I think I can bring success to the program. I'm a very hard working player and I hate losing, so that's my mentality. My mentality takes over a lot when I'm in the game. I just want to see Maryland get to where I think they can be. And I think we have one of the best classes coming out, so I think we'll be great for a few years."
Butler knows there are facets of his game that must be touched on in order for his goals to come into fruition.
"I want to get faster and stronger always. I want to critique my defensive skills more because I've only been playing offense for the majority of my career."
With the Maryland pride in his blood, Butler can't help but want to spread the word of the potential of Maryland football. It's just a matter of finding those who are capable of taking the program to the next level.
"Of course," said Butler when asked if he plans on recruiting other local prospects to stay home. "With that class we have now, I just want to add more to it and make this a home thing."