The D.C. area isn't thought of as rich in football talent along the lines of Texas, Florida or California just yet. That could soon change, however, especially if the University of Maryland's 2012 recruiting class has anything to say about it.
Of the Terrapins' 24 recruits, 11 are from the Washington metropolitan area, a marked improvement from Randy Edsall's first recruiting class a year ago.
One of the primary reasons for Maryland's success on the local front is thought to be the addition of recruiting guru Mike Locksley to the Terrapins staff. Released from his duties as head coach at New Mexico in September, Locksley was named Maryland's offensive coordinator late last year.
"Mike came on board and just really added to what had already been started," Edsall said on Wednesday, national signing day. "He did make an impact in terms of some of the young men that we were recruiting and in Prince George's County and some of the other areas in Maryland that we are going to recruit."
Perhaps Locksley's biggest contribution came with the signing of Good Counsel's Wes Brown. One of the top running backs in the area, Brown says he was originally leaning toward Vanderbilt before a change of heart kept him closer to home.
"For a while it was Vandy, but then I realized how big family is for me and I'm a big family person," Brown said after his signing day ceremony at Good Counsel's Olney campus. "I wanted to stay close to home to my mom so she doesn't have to worry about spending money to get there to see me play."
Brown wasn't the only Good Counsel senior to choose College Park from an impressive list of prospective schools. Offensive tackle Mike Madaras is headed to Maryland despite landing scholarship offers from traditional powers like Michigan, Virginia Tech and South Carolina.
"Out of any colleges I went to, I liked it the most," Madaras told Matt Dewhurst of CSNwashington.com. "I like their goals and I like what Coach Edsall has planned for the future of Maryland.
"Coach Edsall told me that he's going to try really hard to get Maryland kids to actually go to Maryland, keep the local talent in Maryland. I think he did really good at it this year."
Madaras and Good Counsel finished this past season undefeated and ranked in the top five of most national polls, yet there are no Falcons on Maryland's current roster. Good Counsel coach Bob Milloy is a Maryland alum and was clearly excited to see a pipeline developing between Olney and College Park.
"As a coach, being selfish, I wish they'd all go to Maryland so I could go watch practice and games and see them play," Milloy said Wednesday morning. "I think it's great. It's a local school, a great program and it looks like they maybe have a chance to play right away. They are two exceptional football players, too, so good for Coach Edsall and Maryland."