Junior commits sticking with Maryland
The news that Maryland had convinced John Tillman last Tuesday to succeed Dave Cottle as the team’s ninth head coach ended
3023 days of uncertainty surrounding the program. It also provided enormous comfort to high schooler Cory Dobyns.
Dobyns, a soon-to-be senior attackman at Georgetown Prep in the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area who orally committed to the Terps as a junior, said Tillman’s hiring fills a void at summer tournaments.
"I’ve been going to the lacrosse tournaments and I hadn’t seen Maryland [coaches in the stands] because they didn’t have anyone," Dobyns said. "Now, we’ll see Maryland represented."
Dobyns is one of five highly-publicized juniors who verballed to the Terps during the past academic year. The other four are: St. Paul’s attackman Jay Carlson, Delbarton (N.J.) midfielder John Barney, St. Anthony’s (N.Y.) midfielder Joe LoCascio and Haverford (Pa.) long-stick midfielder Goran Murray.
Dobyns applauded the school’s netting of Tillman, saying, "Harvard was the first team to recruit me. I know that Coach Tillman is a really good guy. He really likes kids a lot and he wants to win, which is good. He always has an upbeat attitude, which I like. … I’m really excited for him and I hope he’s excited for me."
Similarly, LoCascio’s father was effusive in his praise of Tillman.
"We’re ecstatic," said Joe LoCascio, a former Adelphi player. "He recruited my son while he was at Harvard. I have not met him personally yet, but I’ve been hearing very positive things."
Both Dobyns and LoCascio said they never wavered in their commitment to the Terps after Cottle had stepped down on May
1623, one day after Maryland had lost to unseeded Notre Dame in a NCAA Tournament quarterfinal. Dobyns’ parents both graduated from Maryland, and LoCascio said he and his wife were satisfied with the university’s academic reputation and their son’s comfort level with his future teammates.
Similarly, Delbarton coach Chuck Ruebling said Barney was anchored in his loyalty to Maryland.
"I’ve had only a brief conversation with him, and he had no intentions of investigating other options," Ruebling said. "As I hope most kids do, he made his choice based on the university and not just on the lacrosse program. I had given him a heads-up because I had heard the rumor that Coach Cottle was on the fence a little bit, and he chose Maryland based on the kids on the team and the overall sense of belonging during the recruiting process."
Tillman joins the Terps with a reputation for molding and shaping powerful offenses. That was wonderful news to Dobyns.
"That’s good," he said. "Hopefully, he’ll bring in a good offensive set that everyone buys into and executes correctly."