Maryland says they can "take over" the Big Ten (in football!)

Submitted by Decatur Jack on August 7th, 2017 at 2:31 PM

Maryland, a team that went 6-7 last year and 3-9 the year before that, feels pretty good about their chances in the conference this year and the future. Too confident? You be the judge.

Three-star Maryland WR recruit Brian Cobbs said this:

"Now people are starting to notice DMV football is just as good as the schools down South as far as getting offers," Cobbs said. "DeMatha does a great job of that, too, getting kids to Maryland. If we can keep those kids around, the Virginia Beach kids, the kids from Maryland, we could really compete in the Big Ten. We could take over the Big Ten."

Echoed by this guy from "Saturday Tradition":

Durkin’s expedited success is hard evidence that Maryland can evolve into a player in the B1G, too. If his effort on the recruiting trail is any indication, it won’t be long before the Terrapins are competing with Meyer’s Buckeyes and Harbaugh’s Wolverines.

Durkin has notched commitments from six recruits with a four-star rating according to 247 Sports. Maryland is on the verge of locking up its highest-ranked recruiting class since such records have been kept. Currently the Terrapins’ 2017 class is No. 15 in the country and third in the B1G.

That’s a good formula for the sustainability of a program.

Various commentary from here, here, and here:

D.J. Durkin loves to brag about his program. The academics surpass every other university in the conference. In fact, the class standing of the Big Ten across the board rose eighteen percentage points just by adding Maryland. The Terps claim to have more Academic All-Americans than any team in the Big Ten East.

But it's not just about academics. Maryland is even crushing division rivals Ohio State and Michigan in revenue increases to the football program. In just two years, Durkin's Terps have ushered in a forty-five percent growth, more than most of college football's heavyweights.

Skeptics might say that this is simply due to renewed season ticket sales which fell dramatically during Randy Edsall's final season, while others could point to the continued investment by Under Armour CEO Kevin Plank as the screen that covers most of the money going into the Maryland program. Durkin likes to say it's because Maryland is simply becoming "The Class of the Big Ten."

No other Big Ten university has a donor like Plank. Clearly his contributions through Under Armour, which include numerous uniform variations, have piqued the interests of the nation's top recruits.

Could this signal an era where Maryland's stellar recruiting takes over the division? Alumni certainly think so. A recent poll by Maryland's athletic department indicates that 79 percent of alumni believe D.J. Durkin will eventually surpass Michigan's Jim Harbaugh and Michigan State's Mark Dantonio as the winningest and highest paid coach in the division, second only to OSU's Meyer.
Maryland's D.J. Durkin's high energy and recruiting prowess give the Terps the best chance at becoming a football powerhouse in college football's toughest division.

He is more likable than Jim Harbaugh, who seems to attract more eye-rolls from the national media than any other college football coach, and is more ethical than Penn State's James Franklin, who shepherds a program that lucked its way into the conference championship game.

While Durkin has a long way to go in becoming as proven as Ohio State's Urban Meyer, it's easy to see Maryland rising to the top of the division if Durkin continues the strides he's making in recruiting.
Team to Watch: Maryland. You talk to any Terrapin coach, player, alumnus, or fan and they'll all tell you the same thing - Maryland is on the rise and could take over the Big Ten. While it may be difficult to see the Terps overtaking Urban Meyer, James Franklin, or Jim Harbaugh in 2017, don't rule it out. DMV recruits are buying what D.J. Durkin is selling.
The Washington D.C. area is home to some of the best recruits in the entire nation, and Durkin has the inside track. If Maryland can keep the talent home and convince these great prospects to play for the Terps, the sky is the limit for Durkin's program. Every year he pulls in more DMV players, the Big Ten East looks more winnable.
Who is better, Jim Harbaugh or D.J. Durkin?
Edge to Harbaugh right now, but give D.J. time.

Harbaugh may have the Super Bowl resume (even though he never actually won one), but he has failed to win even his own division. D.J. Durkin is a younger version of Harbaugh, but more energetic, more likable, and a better recruiter. Don't be surprised to see Michigan fall off the map once Harbaugh takes an NFL job, and Maryland steps into its slot.

Maryland has the toughest schedule in college football this year, should they really be taunting their divisional rivals?



Leaders And Best

August 7th, 2017 at 3:33 PM ^

Almost every big-time program has donors with deep pockets. They don't need to be in the athletic apparel industry to make a difference.

And I think Kevin Plank has bigger issues to deal with right now with the market cap of Under Armour getting halved in 12 months at a time when stock market indices are at all-time highs. So glad Jim Hackett stayed away from Under Armour.


August 7th, 2017 at 10:41 PM ^

Normal left turns suck.  Traffic piles up at all the lights cause there's like four to eight different light cycles.  Michigan lefts let the vast majority of the intersection traffic just bomb on through because chances are excellent you'll hit a green light.

The only intersections should be Michigan lefts and roundabouts.

House Mother

August 7th, 2017 at 4:19 PM ^

I thought it referred to the DelMarVa (Peninsula) Area) - Delaware, Maryland, Virginia.  Where Chesapeake and Delaware Bays are...Chincoteague and Assateague Islands...home of the wild pony Misty and all of her relatives.


August 7th, 2017 at 4:39 PM ^

In the 1990s (when I lived in Pennsylvania), I'd hear the term fairly often and it referred exclusively to the DelMarVa.  Exactly the region you talk about.  Pretty area.  Although it does feel like you are much further south than you are in reality. 

But sometime the 2000s, the larger population to the west began referring to themselves as the DMV.  And they've basically "stolen" it completely at this point. 

As the first verison of the song goes (before Ohio State STOLE it - speaking of stealing!!!), there's a reason the folk from the Eastern Shore "don't give a damn about the whole state of Maryland."


August 7th, 2017 at 5:07 PM ^

they are isolated vs. the rest of the state.  The Eastern Shore is an afterthought in Baltimore and Annapolis (so is everything west of Hagerstown, for that matter).

It won't happen, but replacing Delaware with a new state called "Delmarva" that aggregated (1) current Delaware, (2) Maryland east of the Bay Bridge, and (3) the 2 VA counties on the Peninsula --- that does make some sense.


August 7th, 2017 at 10:36 PM ^

Sorry, but Henson had nothing to do with that. It happened when MSU introduced their Sparty mascot in 1989. That's the big ugly foam mascot that looks roided up at all the games. Henson may have also started calling them that, but I doubt most people even know who he is. Of course the nickname Sparty was quickly improved upon when it was upgraded to Sharty, but that's another story.


August 7th, 2017 at 4:21 PM ^

Making the blanket assertion that Maryland's academics are better than Michigan's and that Durkin is more energetic and a better recruiter than Harbaugh is laughable.

And that's aside from the blithe assumption that Harbaugh's going to be leaving for the NFL before too long.

People get themselves into trouble when they're not in contact with reality.


August 7th, 2017 at 4:44 PM ^

"Durkin is better version of Harbaugh" and most likely "Harbaugh to NFL so then Michigan will suck". 

I'm glad none of them are quoting facts like past two year recruiting rankings and academic rankings. 

I do hope he raises Maryland to be a very good program though. I'd love for the Big 10 East to be a power conference.  Having 4 teams be top 15 -20 programs is great. Rutgers and Indiana will most likely always be down, but State has proven to have good years too, so could have 5 ranked teams to fight for the Championship game. 


August 7th, 2017 at 2:40 PM ^

"Durkin has notched commitments from six recruits with a four-star rating according to 247 Sports. Maryland is on the verge of locking up its highest-ranked recruiting class since such records have been kept. Currently the Terrapins’ 2017 class is No. 15 in the country and third in the B1G."

Didn't Maryland have a bunch of 4- and 5-star guys committed last year, only to have most of them flip to other teams in the weeks leading up to NSD?



August 7th, 2017 at 2:43 PM ^

I agree with the general sentiment that they are getting better. With how they're recruiting, I expect them to be better than MSU for the near future. Problem is, Maryland is not a destination for a head coach. If Durkin turns them into a top 25 program, he'll be gone to a better program.


August 7th, 2017 at 2:49 PM ^

I would certainly HOPE their players/coaches feel that way.  It may be completely wrong but I dont think it would help player morale or ticket sales any if they said "Maryland expects to get ass kicked, again, by other teams in B1G this year.  Players and HC see little point in playing the games as they all know they stand no chance of winning any of them."

Three-star Maryland WR recruit Brian Cobbs said:

"Look, you and I both know we are going to lose and lose big this year.  Odds are most games will be over by the 2nd quarter and players will just be trying to avoid injuries rather than winning a game.  But coach said if the betting line is high enough and the calls break in our favor we might (underline the word "might"), we just MIGHT cover the spread in a game or two.

One can only hope.  Cause we damn sure have no hope of winning a game anytime soon.  Not with this pathetic squad of no-name, no-talent bums and Mr. Happy coach Durkin at the helm."