VIP: Maryland football has juice on the trail after second OV weekend

Maryland football has already picked up a pair of commitments this weekend in Calvert Hall (MD) TE JT Taggart and Lakeland (FL) OT Ben Beymer and with nine verbal commitments currently in the fold, head coach Mike Locksley and the Terps have plenty more juice on the trail.

While the first two commitments came on the offensive side of the ball, Maryland also enters the week well-positioned with a handful of top targets on the defensive side of the ball. Maryland entered the weekend with the lead for Avon (CT) DE Dante Recker with planned visits to both Rice and Virginia, though the Terps have a good chance to change that. While the PA lineman entered June under the radar, his size at 6-foot-6 has pinned him as a perfect fit as a defensive end. As safeties coach Zac Spavital led the way with co-DC Brian Williams all over Rucker, the Terps made a major move with an in-state target. Riverdale Baptist (MD) three-star defensive lineman Nahsir Taylor had Notre Dame heavily in the mix while Pitt surged heading into a late June official, but Maryland reset the board with the weekend to give the in-state lineman a chance to build his rapport with the full defensive staff. Taylor’s interest in Maryland skyrocketed once co-DC Aazaar Abdul-Rahim picked up the pace while defensive GA David Brownlee chipped in on Taylor among several other local targets, but the chance to stay home is one he’s been high on through the process. Taylor’s timeline is murky coming out of the weekend, so I’ll circle back with further on that, but Taylor has proved himself among the area’s best defensive linemen both in camp and practice settings through the spring. Though he didn’t walk away with MVP honors at the UA Baltimore camp, the 6-foot-3, 260-pound lineman routinely showcased his quickness while his motor is tough to miss through practice. It’s not a stretch to call Taylor the best defensive prospect at Riverdale this year, and potentially the best overall—he’s backed that up by routinely beating blue-chip lineman Jayvon McFadden in practice.

As for Chaminade-Madonna (FL) three-star DT Donta Simpson, I’d expect him to follow through on official visits to both FAU and West Virginia the next two weekends but the Terps set the bar and will be tough to beat heading into the rest of the month. Simpson is expected to make his decision at the end of the month when the Florida lineman has a chance to reunite with Deandre Duffus, his former teammate and one of his official visit hosts.

On the other side of the trenches, Maryland already added Ben Beymer whose 6-foot-8, 294-pound frame fits the exact mold of the type of tackles they’ve been looking to add to the room. And even with that size, Beymer’s quick feet and athleticism are evident through his junior film where he started as Lakeland’s starting right tackle as a junior, but also through his basketball background. Beymer measured in at 6-foot-8, 294-pounds with 9 5/8-inch hands, 33 3/8-inch hands and an 80-inch wingspan, giving the room another tackle with his decision in the fold, but there’s juice the Terps have shifted into pole position for Gadsden County (FL) tackle OT Lamar Williams following just his first visit to campus. UCF is the main competition for the 6-foot-5 lineman with Florida State involved, but Maryland rolled out the red carpet for the priority target with a decision expected this month.

Maryland also added one skill player in the fold as Calvert Hall (MD) three-star tight end JT Taggart went public with his pledge, one day after formalizing his decision. While Taggart himself was unsure when a decision would come, it was always clear that the comfort and trust resided in College Park with Maryland battling Colorado and West Virginia. Taggart will get a chance to showcase his length to form a towering duo for Calvert Hall’s defensive line alongside Asaiah Allan-Hamond, but he’ll head to College Park as a tight end. More to come from Calvert Hall head coach Josh Ward on Taggart’s growth through high school, but the newest local commit gives Maryland a potential mismatch at the position after measuring in at 6-foot-7 5/8, 229-pounds with 9.25-inch hands and an 81.25-inch wingspan.

Meanwhile, a notable official visitor this weekend is Monsignor Bonner (PA) fringe four-star receiver Jalil Hall with a commitment date set for June 29 among a final group of Maryland, Syracuse, West Virginia, Duke and Rutgers. The buzz first sat with the Mountaineers following Hall’s first official visit, but space would be a question in Morgantown if Hall ventured to the rest of his scheduled official visits. That didn’t alter Maryland’s pursuit as Hall followed through on his official visit to Maryland where lead recruiter Josh Gattis got a chance to showcase the added dynamic the 6-foot-4 wideout adds to the current wide receiver room. Whether Hall takes other visits remains to be seen, but the Terps are coming off a visit where they rolled out the red carpet to showcase Hall’s potential impact as a Kaden Prather replacement to give them momentum. Longtime Maryland pledge Jett White also officially visited this weekend, while Hun School (NJ) quarterback Jack Moran is in holding pattern as Maryland will move ahead with one quarterback this cycle and all eyes on four-star quarterback Malik Washington heading into his late June official.

As for Terp targets elsewhere this weekend, the biggest surprise came on Sunday night when St. John’s (DC) defensive back Tariq Hayer pulled the trigger on his second official visit, committing to Rutgers prior to stepping foot in College Park. There’s smoke around the Scarlet Knights’ chances with Dunbar tackle Josh Blackston coming out of the visit, but the Terps will look to reverse course and solidify their June 21 official visit with Hayer. Hayer wasn’t the only defensive back to come off the board, though the second is less surprising with blue-chip safety Faheem Delane pulling the trigger on the Buckeyes. While the Terps initially faded with Delane through his junior season before Aazaar’s connections gave them a rejuvenated pursuit through the spring, Maryland hadn’t been able to gain any traction to get the four-star to consider rescheduling his official visit to College Park. The Buckeyes have long been viewed as the team to beat in the race, and with his decision complete, I wouldn’t expect much drama in his recruitment moving forward with Delane set to head to Columbus in January. Some good news—as expected, Spalding (MD) three-star cornerback Jayden Shipps didn’t take his NC State official visit this weekend and I continue to expect him to stand pat following his official to College Park.

Elsewhere, camp season has given Maryland a chance to expand its 2026 board and beyond with early targets making their way to campus to work out in front of the staff. One target who made his way to campus on Sunday was 2026 DeMatha (MD) three-star wide receiver Lavar Keys. If his name sounds familiar on the site, that’s because his name came recommended by Terp WR Taivon Jacobs during DeMatha’s practice last fall as a name to know, drawing rave reviews from his other Stag coaches through the spring and continuing that explosiveness into Sunday after the 5-foot-11 wideout posted a sub-4.4 40 yard dash time during Sunday’s camp. Rutgers, Memphis, Virginia Tech, Boston College and Marshall are among the early offers and I’d expect that list to continue through Keys’ junior season, but he’s an early name to know in the 2026 cycle with the in-state product high on the hometown program.

Related Links

OT Ben Beymer commits to Maryland, breaks down decision
Maryland football in top group for Florida tackle after first visit to campus
In-state TE JT Taggart breaks down his commitment to Maryland
New Jersey QB Jack Moran raves about Maryland official, talks next steps
Maryland pledge returns to campus, talks June visit plans
Maryland football lands Calvert Hall TE JT Taggart