D.J. Durkin said he's not a used car salesman. But if the Maryland head coach's recruiting exploits are any indication, he could be one hell of a used car salesman.
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“I think guys are just realizing and seeing we are who we are at our place,” Durkin said prior to last season, his first as Terrapins' head coach. “We don’t really play the used car salesman type recruiting games. This is who we are, if this fits you and you want to do it, come on with it. If it’s not, we understand too.”
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Apparently a lot of highly rated recruits think Maryland fits them.
Prior to Durkin's arrival in December 2015, Maryland hadn't compiled a top-25 recruiting class (247Sports composite) since 2006 and had never finished with an average prospect rating above 0.8600. After compiling the nation's 18th-best class last year (and their highest-rated class ever at 0.8686), the Terps have the 20th-ranked group entering the early signing period (0.8683 rating). If they maintain the fourth position in the Big Ten, it will be their first back-to-back top-four finishes since 2005-06.
While Maryland has won just 10 games in two seasons under Durkin and still sit well behind East foes Ohio State, Penn State and Michigan on the recruiting trail, they're at least competing.
As of Tuesday, they had 22 commits in the 2018 class, three of whom are four-star prospects, giving them 11 four-star prospects in the last two classes, tied for the highest two-year total in the recruiting era. They beat out Clemson, Georgia, Michigan, Ohio State, Penn State and others for three local prospects, including Austin Fontaine, a defensive tackle from Hyattesville, Md.
Here's a look at their 22-man class: