Ten names to know for Maryland football’s 2025 recruiting: defensive edition

After looking at ten names on the offensive side of the ball, we dive into ten names to know on the defensive side of the ball.

Cooper (KY) four-star edge Austin Alexander

Austin, the nephew of former Seahawks running back Shaun Alexander, has been a familiar face in College Park since the beginning of his high school career after getting a chance to see Maryland for both a practice and a game. That’s given Austin a chance to build an early connection with defensive coordinator Brian Williams as the out-of-state target has Maryland under consideration. Kentucky is the school that has the buzz early on, while Alexander intended to visit Maryland in late July before a personal matter derailed those plans. A return visit either in the fall or spring should be expected as the top-200 prospect watches his recruitment take shape.

Gonzaga (DC) CB Devenchi Arnold

Maryland offered the 6-foot-2 defensive back immediately following his sophomore season as Arnold leads a strong group of 2025 prospects out of the WCAC school in DC. The longtime interest has materialized in multiple visits to campus, including most recently for the July 29 invite-only event where Arnold and his dad were able to get to know defensive coordinator Brian Williams and cornerbacks coach Henry Baker. Arnold was also able to sit down with head coach Mike Locksley on his visit.

“I would probably say in terms with his goal of winning a national championship, he’s making it vital that these hometown guys in the DMV come to Maryland to make this happen and put the state of Maryland on the map.”

Good Counsel (MD) four-star SAF Faheem Delane

Maryland made the top eleven for Delane, arguably one of the top defensive prospects along the east coast, with Alabama, FSU, Penn State, VT, USC, Florida, Oregon, Ohio St, LSU and South Carolina in the mix. Delane was contemplating a late July visit to Maryland before making his way to Virginia Tech, where his older brother Mansoor is ascending into stardom. Despite not making his top group of schools, Georgia is also involved with Delane as the SEC allure holds strong in his recruitment early on, but he’s kept Maryland in play as outside linebacker coach James Thomas leads the way.

Trinity Episcopal (VA) three-star CB Terrance Edwards 

Maryland made the top twelve for Edwards, a 6-foot DB, on Wednesday night alongside Tennessee, Virginia Tech, Oklahoma, Georgia Tech, Clemson, UVA, Louisville, Penn State, WVU, Miami (FL), and Boston College. Edwards sits in Latrell Scott’s area, an area that the Terps continue to hit hard and prioritize heading into 2025, while he’s made his way to campus for a spring practice to give himself familiarity with the program. Louisville, Oklahoma and Virginia Tech were among the most recent schools to host the three-star.

McDonogh (MD) four-star ATH Jeff Exinor

Exinor sits in Brian Braswell’s recruiting area, but his latest visit back on July 29 gave him a chance to sit down with the staff and begin building depth to the relationship, and that includes head coach Mike Locksley. There’s usually been an early standout visit that’s led the Terps to become a concrete player in the recruitment of several elite local targets in recent years, and the July visit is shaping up to be the visit that makes the Terps a player for Exinor. Penn State remains an obvious player after plucking the Eagles’ top talent for years, but Maryland has positioned itself as a player for the athlete target.

St. John’s (DC) four-star CB Tariq Hayer

Two visits in July have helped Maryland remain a player for Hayer with his first visit more of a facility tour before spending quality time with the staff on July 29. His second visit came after plans to visit Penn State fell through, giving Maryland a chance to work on a top local target. Defensive coordinator Brian Williams and cornerbacks coach Henry Baker have built a strong rapport early as the NFL success at the position has been an emphasis. Penn State is involved with Hayer, who is eyeing a visit to Happy Valley this fall, as he enters the fall as the Cadets’ top cornerback.

Friendship (DC) four-star DT Bryce Jenkins

Fewer players turned heads the way Jenkins did this spring into summer as the defensive lineman dominated in one-on-ones against his competition, regardless of class. There is little surprise why, heading into his junior season, Jenkins already boasts a 20+ offer list featuring several SEC and Big Ten suitors. Convincing his already-committed senior teammates to consider staying home proved to be a task too tall, but that won’t be a hurdle for Jenkins as he’s made his way to campus twice since the spring. Defensive coordinator Brian Williams is leading the way as the Terps are in the thick of it. Latest update on Jenkins is here.

Matoaca (VA) three-star DE Caleb Williams

The Virginia product has made his way to Maryland multiple times since his high school career began, whether it’s for practice or a game, and has been able to build a strong rapport with the staff led initially by Gunter Brewer and now Latrell Scott. Williams was contemplating a visit to Maryland on the 29th but opted to make the shorter trip to check out Virginia Tech. The Virginia three-star also has Penn State and South Carolina on his early list of candidates, but Maryland has laid the foundation to take their pursuit into the spring.

St. Frances (MD) four-star DE Trent Wilson

The former St. John’s (DC) standout has transitioned in Baltimore as the Panthers defense never rebuilds but reloads. Wilson is a big piece in St. Frances’s efforts to replenish a defensive line that once again lost three starters who’ve transitioned to Power Five ball. Wilson has a long list of schools involved with Oregon looking to chip away as they break into St. Frances, while Penn State, Ohio State and a host of SEC schools are involved. Wilson has consistently made his way to College Park since his freshman year, including a pair of visits this year, as the relationship between he and defensive coordinator Brian Williams is strong early. The competition is stiff, but they’ll look to turn the tide to finally land a coveted St. Frances defensive lineman.

Gonzaga (DC) four-star SAF Kainoa Winston

Winston was among the first prospects in the area to hear from the staff as the 5-foot-10.5, 185-pound prospect got a chance to flash in front of them at the 7-on-7 during the first weekend of June. Defensive coordinator Brian Williams is leading the way while safeties coach Zac Spavital has been able to put the early touches on their relationship. Penn State was the last school to host him while Michigan is also heavily involved.

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Ten names to know for Maryland football’s 2025 recruiting: offensive edition (+)