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Darnell Savage moved to safety in 2016, and he’s ready for another productive season

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Profiles in Terpage moves to a junior who’s been versatile throughout his career.

NCAA Football: Quick Lane Bowl-Boston College vs Maryland Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

Profiles in Terpage is back for 2017. Last week, we focused on the cornerbacks; this week, we’re continuing through the secondary with Safeties Week.

Darnell Savage, S, No. 4

Height: 5’10
Weight: 191 lbs.
Year: Junior
Hometown: Newark, Delaware
High school: Caravel Academy

How he got to College Park

Savage was a two-way star in high school, posting 1,298 rushing yards and 13 touchdowns on the ground to go with 54 tackles as a senior. He was recruited as a cornerback in the Class of 2015. Maryland was the first to offer the three-star prospect, and he pledged to the Terps in June 2014.

After seeing action in 10 games and recording 12 tackles as a freshman, Savage shifted to free safety in 2016 and made the most of his opportunity. He started 12 games and finished the year third on the team with 59 tackles, including 3.5 for loss.

Career highlight

Savage made his first career interception in the Quick Lane Bowl against Boston College, returning it 30 yards.

2017 prospectus

Maryland will look to Savage as one of its defensive anchors this fall—after all, he switched to No. 4, which was previously worn by Will Likely, whom he considers a mentor. Savage should have a big role, whether it’s at the safety spot he occupied last year or at nickel cornerback, where he played in the spring game. If he can take another step forward like he did as a sophomore, his play could garner recognition outside of College Park.

Dream season

Savage makes that next step forward and plays both spots at a high level. He keeps racking up tackles and adds a few more takeaways to the stat sheet. Along with Conyers and a young crop of cornerbacks, Savage helps the secondary become the strength of Maryland’s defense.

Up next

A freshman who committed to the Terps during the Under Armour All-America game.

Malaclemys and America’s Roundtable joins Scaletta on the board this week.