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Maryland football is about to secure its best recruiting class (probably) ever

This is the Maryland Minute, a short story followed by a roundup of Terps-related news.

Maryland v Florida International Photo by Rob Foldy/Getty Images

We’re only two days from National Signing Day, and Maryland football’s recruiting class is almost set. In DJ Durkin’s first full recruiting cycle, the Terps are reeling in prospects at a level not seen from this program in years.

Maryland’s recent addition of four-star running back Anthony McFarland moved the class up to No. 16 on 247Sports Composite rankings.

That’s a stark contrast from what the program’s used to. Maryland recruited at a top-30 level for a couple years in the mid-2000’s with Ralph Friedgen as head coach, but never got to anything resembling an elite level under Randy Edsall.

Maryland's 247Sports Composite class rankings

Class Avg. Rating Rank
Class Avg. Rating Rank
2017 0.866 16
2016 0.844 42
2015 0.84 49
2014 0.8453 40
2013 0.8351 41
2012 0.8299 38
2011 0.8126 52
2010 0.8425 38
2009 0.8443 29
2008 0.8464 46
2007 0.8184 37
2006 0.8294 27
2005 0.8264 26
2004 0.8269 17
2003 0.8319 26
2002 0.8365 30

Here’s that represented visually:

But more importantly, Durkin and Co. are recruiting higher-quality players. The Terps have eight blue-chip recruits committed in the 2017 class, the same number they had in the previous three classes. That brings up their average recruit rating way up from what the program’s ever done before.

And Maryland might not be done, either. Four-star cornerback Tariq Castro-Fields is committing on National Signing Day, and he’s deciding between the Terps and Penn State.

Still, it’s technically hard to declare Maryland’s class its “best ever.” Recruiting rankings have only been around since 2002, and they’ve been getting more accurate since then.

Here’s a disclaimer from our Alex Kirshner:

Context is necessary: Recruiting rankings have modernized over time, and we're starting here with the first year (2002) during which all of Maryland's signees got rankings. It also doesn't account for all of history before 2002, but to that point, it's sort of nonsensical in the first place to compare modern recruiting classes to those from a generation ago. The recruiting game has changed so much and become so much more industrial that 2017-versus-1976, for instance, is not an apples-to-apples comparison.

But any way you slice it, Maryland is recruiting at a level this kind of program just shouldn’t be.

In other news

Maryland added four-star running back Anthony McFarland to an already-crowded backfield. Putting him with Ty Johnson and Lorenzo Harrison should make for a talented running back unit.

Maryland women’s basketball is 21-1 after dusting Iowa on Sunday, and Maryland men’s basketball moved to 19-2 after beating Minnesota.

Kicker Jonathan Doerer flipped his commitment from Maryland to Notre Dame last night.

Four-star linebacker Ellis Brooks is announcing his commitment today, and 247Sports Crystal Ball predictions have him going to Penn State.