Four-star DeMatha Catholic (Md.) all-purpose back Anthony McFarland, one of the country's best 2017 backfield prospects, pegs Maryland among his top schools, he told Testudo Times on Sunday.
Speaking at the Washington regional camp for Nike's The Opening, McFarland said he'd release a top-15 list before his high school season starts at the end of the summer. But Maryland stands out early, along with a few programs that have had far more recent success: Alabama, Oklahoma, South Carolina and Miami. That list is not totally exhaustive.
McFarland likes Maryland's new coaching staff, and he said the Terps' recruitment of him has been smooth.
"I think about it all the time, staying home, playing with my friends again and my teammates and things like that," McFarland said. "But at the same time, I've gotta go see these other schools and what they've got to offer me, what type of institution I'm gonna be in, because you just never know with the recruiting changes and the coaches and things like that, you just never know. So I'm just going all out with this recruitment process."
He's leaving his choice entirely open right now, as he holds scholarship offers (or the presumable ability to get one) from virtually every top school in the country. He'll be a good test of how strong Maryland's local appeal really is.
ESPN300 RB Anthony McFarland running routes one on one pic.twitter.com/Y6loieP27S— Tom VanHaaren (@TomVH) April 17, 2016
McFarland may or may not actually be a running back for the long haul. He has excellent speed, but he's not huge at 5'9 and a little less than 200 pounds. His size suggests he'll play slot receiver, but he runs routes well enough to play on the outside. He might also stick at running back. There are a lot of outcomes here, but all of them end with McFarland being a legitimate playmaker.
"You've just gotta be fearless, you know? I know, for myself, I'm a speed guy, but I don't really like going down. I like to show my power and stuff like that, but it's just all about being fearless, man. If you love the game, man, you're not going to back down from no linebackers or things like that," McFarland said. "You're gonna do what you have to do to get in the end zone at the end of the day."