The Maryland football team has, at least temporarily, lost the first oral commitment of its recruiting class of 2014 when offensive lineman Jared Cohen announced his intention to decommit.
Listed at 6 feet 4 and 290 pounds, the McDonogh High School guard currently boasts a four-star rating from Rivals.
In posting the news on Twitter, Cohen included a lengthy statement, the full text of which is transcribed below. The gist is that Cohen, who over the past several months has been a public advocate of the Terrapins, even speaking about his plans to help lure other recruits, received an unexpected offer from Penn State. He wanted to pay an official visit but, according to Cohen, could only do so — under the condition imposed by the Maryland coaching staff — if he decommitted. So here we are.
For those who don’t know, I have decommited from Maryland. I know this news may come as a shock to most of you but, I wanted to explain my reasoning. When I first began my recruitment, Penn State was my top school. Recently, they told me they wanted to offer me. I told the Maryland coaches that I wanted to go up there for an official visit, but they said the only way that I could go was if I decommitted. I didn’t want to, but I was given no other choice. I need to do this for myself so I can know in my heart which is the right decision for me for the next 4 or 5 years. My offer from Maryland is still there, so I will be able to return if I choose to do so. But until then, I’m reopening my recruitment. Thank you.
Since the news is already out, I want to confirm that I did decommit from UMD. My reasoning is in the pic. pic.twitter.com/7FJjBUjjN2
— Jared Cohen (@Tha_Jare_Bear) December 21, 2013
Cohen is high school teammates with defensive back Josh Woods, who committed to Maryland in mid-November. Cohen himself offered his oral commitment this February. This news thins out Maryland’s offensive line class, which is still hunting local five-star standout and two-time All-Met Damian Prince (McNamara) but recently lost out on both Marcus Applefield (Rutgers) and Brock Ruble (Florida State).