Maryland football looked like it had a shot with Ellis Brooks for a while, but that time is officially over. The four-star linebacker recruit from Richmond, Va. committed to Penn State on Monday afternoon.
COMMITTED‼️ On to the next chapter!! #WeAre #PSU ⚪️ pic.twitter.com/OqytmCTId8— Ellis Brooks (@EllisBrooks35) January 30, 2017
Maryland had been recruiting Brooks for a long time, starting when Randy Edsall was still head coach of the program back in 2015.
Brooks was briefly committed to Duke from March to May last year, but seemed a Maryland lean during various parts of this fall. He visited College Park unofficially in September and officially in early December.
Brooks saw his recruiting profile rise after football season ended, gaining offers from LSU, Oregon and UCLA. But 247Sports Crystal Ball predictions still liked him going to Maryland about a week ago.
Then Penn State offered him, and Brooks went on an official visit to Happy Valley this weekend.
#ESPN300 & Under Armour @AllAmericaGame LB @EllisBrooks35 on his official visit to #PennState pic.twitter.com/Or6pqcSb6v— Gerry Hamilton (@HamiltonESPN) January 28, 2017
Then experts started predicting in relative unanimity that Brooks would commit to Penn State. Here’s a screenshot of how 247Sports Crystal Ball predictions for Brooks have changed over time. Maryland looked to be in a good spot recently, but Penn State shot up in the past few days.
Maryland would have likely provided Brooks a chance to play right away, as starting linebacker Shane Cockerille didn’t play in the team’s bowl game due to an academic issue. His status with the team is unclear, and Maryland doesn’t have a definitive candidate to take his place. Brooks is ranked as the No. 13 inside linebacker in the 2017 class and the No. 10 player in Virginia by the 247Sports Composite.
With only two days remaining until National Signing Day, Upper Marlboro, Md. cornerback Tariq Castro-Fields appears to be Maryland’s only remaining target. The Terps are also competing with Penn State to land him, and recent Crystal Ball predictions have him going to the Terps.