A rough recruiting stretch continued for the Maryland football team, when Gilman linebacker Melvin Keihn announced his oral commitment to Virginia Tech on Twitter on Christmas Eve.
Officially committed to Virginia Tech for football! #hokienation
— Melvino15 (@M_15OnMyChest) December 24, 2013
The move was expected, as Keihn had publicly named the Hokies his leader in the weeks leading up the announcement, but his stated top three also included Maryland and Virginia. He had long maintained patience throughout the recruitment process,, which at one time contained upwards of 17 FBS offers, but ultimately pushed up his date, apparently content with the decision he had made.
“Some kids feel like, when the top players in the country commit, others follow,” he said in June after an offseason workout in Baltimore. “Well you have to do what you want to do, what’s going to be best for you, you can’t rush your decision because others committed. If I’m the last person to commit, then hey, I am. Just make the right decision.”
Establishing a pipeline at Gilman was a clear goal of Coach Randy Edsall’s, and he managed to reel in fullback Kenneth Goins (class of 2012) and quarterback Shane Cockerille (class of 2013) from the private school powerhouse. But as Testudo Times’ Pete Volk noted, the in-state track record isn’t exactly great for Maryland this recruiting cycle, particularly after offensive lineman Jared Cohen de-committed to reevaluate his options and DeMatha offensive lineman Brock Ruble committed to Florida State.
With Cohen’s decommitment, #Terps have ONE commitment out of the top 20 players in MD. They are also the only major program in the state.
— Pete Volk (@Pete_Volk) December 23, 2013
Granted, that one commitment is No. 2 Jesse Aniebonam, and the Terps remain in play for offensive lineman Damian Prince, the state’s top-ranked player, so getting the state’s two best players is still a possibility. But right now, more top-20 players in Maryland, according to 247sports.com, have committed to Wisconsin (three), Penn State (two), Florida State (two), Virginia Tech (two) and Michigan (two) than the Terps. Of course, they will face three of those schools next season in the Big Ten.