Terps Get Their First Verbal Commitment of 2017

 

College Spun reports, and, Twitter confirms, that tight end Andrew Park has verbally committed to being the first person to join DJ Durkin’s 2017 freshman class at the University of Maryland.

Park is from Virginia, which, as we all know, is in-state recruiting for Maryland.

Urban Meyer, you stay away from this one! We’re not your advance scouting service! 😉

The Terps got the verbal despite interest in the prospect from Big Ten rival Penn State (Imagine your humble blogger trying really hard not to make the obvious joke about Penn State), and an offer from Maryland’s very special former ACC rival designate, the University of Pittsburgh (Either you get that in joke about Maryland’s “rivalry” with Pittsburgh or you don’t. It’s a long story. I’ll save it for a slow blog day 😉 ), among others.

Some sources tag Park as a 3 star recruit, while others have him down as unrated.

Sources say that the key factor in the big man’s decision was the excellent grounds-keeping at College Park. “It will likely be a walk in the park, or a walk for a Park getting from class to class,” he probably did not say.

“Hey, did somebody call my name?” Senior cornerback Will Likely  almost certainly did not interject as he was probably not walking by.

Um, anyway, Maryland got a verbal from a tight end. Putting the Park back in College Park!

I’m clearly not a graduate of Maryland’s journalism school…

What I can tell you, however, is that Park is 6’5″ and weighs 233lbs, plus or minus the weight of a celebratory dinner. I got that information here, the bad joke was all mine. 😉

Good day for Maryland football!

Great to have the next great Maryland TE in the fold.

We have a long tradition of great players at the tight-end position, including NFL star Vernon Davis.

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The DMV Gets Larger

There has always been some debate over what constitutes the DMV for the purposes of the Maryland Pride movement, which aims to keep local football recruits home and playing for the University of Maryland.  Is it the entire state of Maryland plus Washington DC?  The Washington metro area, which includes only parts of Maryland, but also DC and Northern Virginia?  The entire state of Maryland plus  DC and Northern Virginia?  A large swath of the Mid-Atlantic region?

Well, Maryland offensive coordinator Walt Bell has helpfully, almost literally, drawn us a map:

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I like it. 🙂

Take that Confederacy, we’ve absorbed your old capitol into a Union state! 😉

It’s a maximalistic approach to what local is, and an ambitious plan of attack for the new staff.  It’s not unrealistic, though.  Maryland’s coaching staff includes top recruiter and former University of Virginia head coach Mike London, among many others.  People on our staff have ties to that region, and of course we are by far the closest Big Ten school to all of those areas.

If you live in even the most northern and most southern most tiers of that region, you’re getting Baltimore Orioles and Washington Nationals (baseball) games on television during baseball season, and Washington Capitals and Washington Wizards (Pro hockey and basketball) games during the fall, winter, and early spring.  Football coverage is done differently, but the whole region gets either the Baltimore Ravens or the Washington Redskins or both most weeks of the football season (The mix varying depending on where you are, exactly), and both of those teams play in Maryland (The Ravens, as you might imagine, have their home in Baltimore City, and, perhaps less predictably if you don’t already know the answer, the Redskins in Landover, MD, despite their name reflecting an affiliation with the capitol).

This is our home recruiting territory. 🙂

And, personally, as a Marylander, I like the idea of painting adjoining territory in our state colors. 🙂

base

Might I suggest adding South-Central Pennsylvania?

It’s in the Chesapeake Bay water basin, and York and some other cities close to the border are practically bedroom communities for Baltimore (Meaning people live up there and commute to work by driving down I-83 every morning and back up I-83 in the evening).

tmnt.png

Source for the map: https://twitter.com/coachwaltbell/status/698281521837379584

Spring Football!

One of the great parts of living in Maryland is that you can experience all four seasons in their fullness. Sure, you can argue that spots south may have a more summery summer, or that points north have a more wintery winter, and you’d probably be right, but when you move too far north or south, you tend to mostly lose the season opposite of what a given region is most known for.

Summer time in Maryland brings warm weather, with thoughts of surf, sand, beaches, and bikinis, the trees with their seasonal leaves green and healthy and full grown, the flowers in bloom, sweat trickling down your brow while you walk the city concrete or the country path. Crabs, of course, when you can afford them. The Chesapeake Bay. Maryland actually even has a little bit of the Appalachian Trail within it’s borders (Not the South American Mark Sanford version 😉 ).

Two Appalachian Trails:

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Which would you rather hike?

Anyway, summer’s opposite is kind of a neat experience, too, at least until about the beginning of February when the snow starts to feel like the plague and the electric/heating bill starts to resemble the Ohio State Buckeyes’ player payroll (See what I did there? 🙂 ).

The Christmas season, huddling by the fire, snowball fights, and so on and so forth can hold a lot of appeal to both traditionalists and young people alike:

Even fall (aka “Autumn” to those of you from the University of Virginia), is anecdotally a favorite season for many in the region.  Traditionally thought of as beginning around Labor Day (The earth’s rotation around the sun aside 😉 ), the first weeks of fall feel like one last gasp of summer.  Some days even require air conditioning (Most window air units don’t come out until October), but others you can feel like you almost, but don’t require need something other than a t-shirt (or pants- which are optional only if you rate  a 7 or better attractiveness wise 😉 ).

Those gentle days, as the summer sunsets, drinking Octoberfest beers, are many people’s favorite.  Football season, college and pro, is in swing, the weather is still nice but milder, there’s just a hint of a chill at night, the air conditioning bills are down, the heating bills are not yet on the radar, etc..  This melts into October and November with a beautiful display of red and brown leaves, breaking out the windbreaker light jackets, Halloween, Thanksgiving (Don’t forget the sauerkraut with that turkey if you’re in Baltimore!  It’s a longstanding tradition, and it’s delicious 🙂 ), etc..

sauerkraut

Spring, somehow, seems undefined.  March almost feels like winter.  There’s a lot of rain.  There’s no football.  Baseball season starts if you’re into that.

In DC (College Park is within the DC beltway, despite being within the state of Maryland), you do get a beautiful view of Cherry Blossom trees, which only bloom in the spring for a short amount of time:

cherryblossoms

For football fans, though, there is only spring practice, where the players who will be returning to fight for Maryland in the fall and early enrollees and transfers hone their skills.  The highlight of spring practice, for the fans, is the annual spring game.

We now have a date, and a time, and a bonus lacrosse game:

 

The nice thing about the spring game is, Maryland always wins:

There will also be autograph opportunities, and a chance to look at available season tickets by actually walking around the stadium and finding the seats that are tagged as available.

And, did I mention *FOOTBALL* in the Spring?

I believe I did. 🙂

Hat tip to PeachesTerp.