For new Maryland football coach Mike Locksley, recruitment within the DMV is priority No. 1. However, recruits such as consensus three-star running back Peny Boone, a Detroit, Mich., native, leads the way for others coming from far and wide.
Boone, who plays his high school football at Martin Luther King High School in Detroit, was offered a scholarship by multiple FBS programs, including in-state powerhouses Michigan and Michigan State before ultimately choosing Maryland this month.
"They were showing me a lot of love," Boone said on
Glenn Clark Radio
June 24. "Coach Locksley came from Alabama, and he was just a really down to Earth guy. He was telling me what's what ... and how I'll fit in the offense."
Listed at 6-foot-2 and 225 pounds, Boone has the potential to become a physically dominant running back for the Terps. Boone said he models his game after Tennessee Titans power back Derrick Henry (6-foot-3, 247 pounds). Henry ran for 1,059 yards and 12 touchdowns last year.
"I can run through people," Boone said. "I can run around people, too. ... I'm already fast, just need to work on my extra step."
Boone joins a growing list of out-of-state recruits from the 2020 recruiting class who intend to play college football in College Park, Md. The Detroit native ranks as the top commitment in the class, according to 247Sports' composite rankings. Other top recruits in the class include consensus three-star running back Ebony Jackson (Marietta, Ga.) and consensus three-star outside linebacker Ruben Hyppolite II (Hollywood, Fla.).
Overall, out of the 14 commitments for the 2020 class, nine have been from players outside the state. A reason behind the recent success in the recruitment pool can be attributed to Locksley's recruitment style, a major reason Boone decided to sign on with Maryland.
"It was something like, 'I can get close with this guy,'" Boone said. "He was saying all the right stuff, everything was falling into place. ... If you talk to him, you will see like, 'OK, this guy isn't like other coaches.'"
One of Boone's long-term goals is being able to reach the NFL, a dream he feels is achievable in College Park. However, in order to be looking that far ahead, he must also look at the now, as Maryland's running-back corps is arguably one of the strongest areas on the team.
The Terps' backfield in 2018 included Anthony McFarland Jr. (1,034 rushing yards on 131 carries), Javon Leake (309 yards on 34 carries) and Tayon Fleet-Davis (331 yards on 75 carries). McFarland will be a redshirt sophomore in 2019, while Leake and Fleet-Davis will be juniors.
Boone feels the competition that may await him in 2020 is just another step in the process of proving himself and becoming an integral part of the team.
"I just see it as competition," Boone said. "I just compete, that's it, [and] it's time to compete."
For more from Boone, listen to the full interview here:
Photo Credit: Kenya Allen/PressBox