Three-star Class of 2022 cornerback Lionell Whitaker has committed to Maryland football, he announced Monday.
The Tallahassee, Florida native chose the Terps over offers from Boston College, Tennessee and Rutgers among others.
“Maryland was my first offer,” Whitaker told Testudo Times. “I’ve talked to just about all of the coaches and I just loved all the love they showed.”
While Whitaker lacks a composite ranking, he ranks as the No. 74 cornerback in the nation and No. 101 prospect in Florida, according to 247/Sports.
Standing at 6-foot, 160 pounds, Whitaker brings speed and playmaking ability to the cornerback position. As a two-way wide receiver in high school, his consistent catching ability has come in handy on the defensive end when he breaks on passes.
“I’m a ballhawk,” Whitaker said. “I love to go up there and get the pick. I love playing man coverage.”
Whitaker helped lead Rickards High School to the 5A Florida state championship game in 2020, but the Raiders fell to American Heritage.
Maryland has continued to make headway in Florida on the recruiting trail, with key wins in 2021. Fellow panhandle product Darrell Jackson, a three-star defensive end from Havana, flipped to the Terps in December with four-star linebacker Branden Jennings and five-star linebacker Terrence Lewis also joining the fold from other parts of the state.
“[Jackson] has been texting me, asking where I’m going and telling me to come to Maryland,” Whitaker said. “I never told him I was coming, but I guess he knows now.”
Maryland now has five commitments in the Class of 2022, with Whitaker marking the first from Florida and fourth on the defensive side of the ball. The Terps currently sit in the top-15 nationally and at No. 4 in the Big Ten, according to 247/Sports.