Posted: 1:34 p.m. Wednesday, May 1, 2013
By Pete Volk
Next up is the final secondary player in our series.
Collegiate Stats: 137 tackles (101 solo), five-and-a-half for a loss, one fumble forced, one fumble recovered for a touchdown, 14 pass break ups, three interceptions, five kickoff returns for 71 yards, one punt return for one yard
High School Stats: 97 tackles, six interceptions, 48 catches for 885 yards and 11 touchdowns, 76 carries for 457 yards and nine touchdowns, three returns (two kickoff, one punt) for touchdowns
Recruiting Ratings: Three stars by Rivals (#76 ATH), Scout (#63 S), ESPN (#28 ATH)
High School: Stafford
Hometown: Falmouth, Va.
High School Highlights:
Let today's profile serve as a reminder to the all of you how insanely talented Dexter McDougle is. Just look at that highlight tape. Or his stats from high school. Or both. I'll wait.
McDougle was teammates with Torrey Smith for two years at Stafford, and was a relatively unknown quantity during that time. His junior season, he broke two of his knuckles during a freak injury in practice, missing a good chunk of the year and entering his senior campaign not on the radar of many major programs. Halfway through that aforementioned outstanding senior season, his coach quickly made a highlight tape to send out, and Maryland, South Carolina and Virginia Tech responded in kind with scholarship offers.
McDougle chose Maryland, and redshirted his first season. The next year, he played in eleven games as a reserve cornerback, recording 22 tackles before breaking his collarbone in a scooter accident. As a sophomore, McDougle started all twelve games, even with the presence of seniors Cameron Chism and Trenton Hughes at corner. He led the team with six pass breakups and tied for the Terrapin lead with three interceptions, while being named to the Academic All-ACC team.
Last year, McDougle burst onto the scene as a starter, finishing third on the team with 71 tackles. At times he struggled in coverage, particularly on the deep ball, but him and Jeremiah Johnson proved to be quite the tandem at cornerback, giving Maryland fans genuine excitement about this year's secondary unit
Ending last year with a career-high 11 tackles against North Carolina.
McDougle puts it all together in his senior year, combining for at least ten interceptions and pass break-ups.
Dexter McDougle and Jeremiah Johnson will be the two starting cornerbacks for Maryland this season. If this is not true at any point over the course of the year, something has gone wrong. The two of them are arguably the most talented players in the secondary, inarguably the most experienced, and bring the kind of leadership that Maryland needs to a depleted defensive unit.
Last year, Maryland struggled with their pass defense, giving up far too many deep passes. Part of that falls on McDougle, but most of the blame has to go towards the inexperienced safety corps, thrown into duty early thanks to injury. This year, everyone is a year older and has more experienced in Brian Stewart's system. With McDougle and Johnson holding down the fort on the outside, the hope is that Maryland won't have to rely so much on Nixon and Davis in long situations. The even broader hope is that when they do have to fall on those options, the young kids show up. At the end of the day, the strong situation at corner is more than enough to feel good about.
Our next player shares his first name with a top Maryland football target.
UATerp is on the board.
ClickClack62 - 6
curterp - 3
Maryland1206 - 3
Redturtle - 2
802Terp - 2
proudterp - 1
terpsfinish - 1
KHemer - 1
apgibson24 - 1
UATerp - 1