December 7, 2019

Maryland Football: Terps lose verbal commits QB Dwayne Haskins and OLB Keandre Jones to Ohio State

After weeks of momentum for head coach DJ Durkin in putting together a recruiting monster of coaching staff, a storm of bad news came down on MLK Monday when quarterback Dwayne Haskins and outside linebacker Keandre Jones both flipped their verbal commitments from Maryland to Ohio State.

Both de-commits come on the eve of wholesale coaching changes that resulted in both players going on official visits to other schools. Besides Randy Edsall‘s termination, the likely departure of former-interim head coach Mike Locksley, an elite national recruiter, was also a huge cause of lost verbal commitments. Haskins was on the Buckeyes campus on Dec. 11, while Jones just finished a visit this past weekend.

(Photo by: 247Sports)

(Photo by: 247Sports)

Haskins, a four-star pro-style quarterback, was the seventh-rated player at the position and third overall rated prospect in the state of Maryland. Haskins finished a successful career at The Bullis School in Potomac and was thought to be the face of the University of Maryland for years to come as a blue-chip prospect.

Jones is also a four-star recruit, ninth best outside linebacker in the country, and comes out of Good Counsel in Olney, MD. Jones was ranked just behind Haskins as the fourth-best player in the state.

It is clear that the stability and historical success of Urban Meyer was a strong detraction of the Terps chances. Unfortunately, Maryland will have to suffer through Haskins and Jones likely success in person during future Big Ten battles. That starts as early as Nov. 12, when the Buckeyes come to Maryland Stadium.

At the quarterback position, where Haskins was expected to compete for an season opening start as a true freshman, the Terps still have seniors Caleb Rowe and Perry Hills. Both were inadequate at best in their roles in 2015, a big reason for the disaster of a year, but return as the most noteworthy options. Maryland also has previously converted full back Shane Cockerille and youngster Greg Shaffer in the mix of a possible open-quarterback competition.

The Terrapins have made offers to three-star Lousiana talent Lindsey Scott Jr. and Ty Pigrome, a three-star dual threat prospect, in hopes of bringing at least one new option to the team. Just after the announcement of Haskins breaking his verbal commitment, Maryland also offered a scholarship to Nicholas State commit Chase Fourcade. Fourcade is also from the Lousiana are and has a strong history with current Terps offensive coordinator Walt Bell from his days at Arkansas State.

Durkin could also look in the graduate transfer pool for a short-term option, which did not exactly work out last year with Daxx Garman. National signing day is Feb. 3, so the coaching staff will need to act fast on any possible recovery plan.

At the end of the day, the Terrapins will probably not have success as immediate as this upcoming season without dynamic talents like Haskins and Jones at two essential positions. That does not mean the program is not in a better place than finishing with a 3-9 record last fall.

Tino Ellis, a four-star wide receiver from DeMatha who has reaffirmed his commitment to Maryland, is not too worried about the loss of two great talents. Terps fans should not be either. Things might get worse before they get better (although there is not much worse from last year), but they will get better!

Most importantly, please do not harass Dwayne Haskins or Keandre Jones (not on Twitter) in any form. They are high school kids who wanted to make the best decision for their future. Do not stoop down to the level of many Wisconsin Badgers fans when Diamond Stone blessed us with his presence last Spring.

In the meantime enjoy the magical season taking place on the hardwood for the Terrapins, who coincidentally just demolished these same Ohio State Buckeyes.

About Neil Dalal

Neil Dalal is a Staff Writer for District Sports Page covering the Redskins, Wizards, and Maryland Terrapins. Neil grew up in Silver Spring, MD and attends the University of Maryland. Neil has loved everything related to the Redskins, Wizards, Capitals, and Terrapins since he was eight years old. However, he favors the Orioles, as he started watching baseball before the Expos moved to DC. You can follow Neil on Twitter @NeilDalal96.

%d bloggers like this: