VIP: update on priority targets, marquee visitors, staff + roster notes

The latest notes from the trail and out of College Park:

Update on Queen…with high school basketball seasons winding down and prospects beginning to shift their attention towards recruiting with the spring around the corner, I’m hearing that Maryland has made a strong push to get four-star Derik Queen back on campus and sounds like that could be his first stop when he returns to the area from school. Until then, it’s status quo. There was hope midseason that Queen would return to campus for a game on an unofficial visit, but planning visits in the midst of his own season proved too difficult as the staff stayed patient. The staff’s emphasis on Queen dates back to last summer with the staff out in full force and a contact close to Queen reiterated the staff’s relentless pursuit. Assistants Tony Skinn and Tevon Saddler continue to remain in frequent contact with Queen’s camp, winning over the mom through the winter into the spring, while head coach Kevin Willard has played an active role and done so consistently since his October official, one contact in Queen’s camp told IBG. Indiana and Auburn are two more who are kicking around for Queen down the stretch as he proceeds with a summer commitment timeframe. And while NIL will loom large in his recruitment, I continue to hear that Maryland is well-positioned in that regard.

Four-star visitor…we’ve reported several local prospects making their way to campus over the next ten days and another will be on campus next week. Flowers (MD) four-star edge rusher Obinna Onwuka will visit campus on March 7, he tells IBG. Arguably no local prospect has watched their stock rise more than Onwuka this spring Onwuka also announced he’ll visit Virginia Tech on March 21. Oklahoma, Miami, Penn State, West Virginia, USC and Virginia Tech are among the schools to offer the 6-foot-4 edge rusher. Boston College has extended an offer and will be a factor with his older brother, Chibueze Onwuka, enrolled with the Eagles. Running backs coach Elijah Brooks is leading the charge as the Terps work to make themselves a player, and moving forward, I expect the rest of Onwuka’s teammates to make it to campus. Four-star CB Braydon Lee and three-star LB Kendric Council are in the process of scheduling visits to campus with the staff in pursuit. Maryland played host to a group from Good Counsel on Wednesday night while Flowers OT Mike Williams was on campus late into the night. I’m hearing that more top regional prospects will be back on campus this upcoming weekend with the staff moving full steam ahead.

Spring ball…the buzz around Ryan Manning remains consistent as he and the rest of the receivers have been frequent visitors inside Jones-Hill House this offseason. On the two-deep front, the offensive line is undoubtedly the biggest question this spring with at least two new starters, but the return of Amelio Moran looms large as a possible option to replace Mason Lunsford at left guard. While that position gets sorted through camp, the confidence at tackle sits high with DJ Glaze looking like a future NFL prospect and Gottlieb Ayedze arriving on campus in-shape and among the leaders through offseason workouts. Center, meanwhile, could be a closer battle than anticipated as Coltin Deery, who opted out of wrestling season and will begin his career as a sophomore, works through the conditioning program.

Staff updates…In regards to staff updates, the first domino dropped as I reported on Monday morning—Charlie Strong has landed at Alabama. The Crimson Tide came into the picture over the last week and confidence waned heading into the weekend, but I continue to hear that Josh Gattis, Pep Hamilton and Zac Spavital are in position to fill out the staff.