A recurring series where we will profile every player and coach on Maryland’s roster, counting down to kick-off against Miami. Thanks to OBNUG for the idea.
Today we profile an incoming freshman who will compete for the starting fullback spot this year.
Tyler Cierski, Freshman, Fullback
Ratings: Three stars, #4 fullback by Rivals; three stars, #7 fullback by Scout; three stars, #2 fullback by ESPN
40-yard dash time: 4.65
High School Stats (Senior Year): 143 carries for 755 yards and 11 touchdowns, 16 receptions for 187 yards and two touchdowns
High School Stats (Junior Year): 82 carries for 327 yards and four touchdowns, four receptions for 61 yards and one touchdownn
High School Stats (Sophomore Year): 75 carries for 424 yards and six touchdowns, eight receptions for 62 yards
High School: Mill Creek High School (Dacula, Ga.)
How’d He Get To College Park?
Tyler Cierski was one of the top fullbacks in the country, and it’s easy to see why. The dude is an absolute nightmare in every facet of the fullback game – blocking, catching, and running the football.
Cierski’s commitment follows a familiar pattern among top-level Maryland commitments – the Terps identified him before any other big-time programs, offered him his first scholarship, and built a relationship through the coaching staff that ended up with a commit. Part of a growing movement the Maryland staff (in particular, O-Line coach Tom Brattan) has made into the state of Georgia, Cierski was an early commit to the Terps. He was also recruited by Georgia, South Carolina, and Virginia Tech, and was offered by Stanford.
A very bright kid, Cierski also threw shotput and discus in high school and broke six school records while playing football at Mill Creek, including the single season and career marks for points and rushing touchdowns. He first burst onto the recruiting scene after his sophomore year, and was still able to put up good numbers during his junior season despite being hampered by an injury.
After the firing of Ralph Friedgen, Cierski made plans to visit former offensive coordinator James Franklin and Vanderbilt, especially when Mike Leach was thrown around as a candidate. When Randy Edsall was hired, however, Cierski kept his commitment to the Terps.
More after the jump.
Tyler “Moose” Cierski. It’s his real nickname, and it certainly fits his playing style.
Rushing for 125 yards and two touchdowns in an upset win over South Gwinnett in the state playoffs during his senior year.
The uncertainty surrounding Friedgen’s dismissal.
Arbitrary Top Five List:
Top 2011 fullbacks, by Rivals:
1. Hunter Joyer – Florida
2. Trayion Durham – Kent State
3. Trevon Pendleton – Unknown
4. Tyler Cierski – Maryland
5. Travis Riley – North Carolina
Cierski wins the starting fullback spot (for the next four years) and records at least three touchdowns.
Cierski redshirts, losing the starting job to Rahsaan Moore.
Tyler Cierski has a good of a shot as any true freshman of starting this year for the Terps. Currently listed at third on the fullback depth chart behind Jeff Hernandez and Rahsaan Moore, the word out of camp is it’s a two-person battle for the starting spot between Moore and Cierski.
Cierski certainly has hype and talent going for him, but that doesn’t mean anything. We would be willing to bet money that if he had been able to graduate high school a semester early and enroll in Maryland last spring, he would have the starting job right now. As it stands, however, he is extremely new to the program, giving Moore an experience and familiarity advantage.
Regardless of whether Cierski wins the starting job for this year, he should be the favorite for next year, unless Moore absolutely blows up the scene at fullback. We’ll just have to wait and see if he burns his redshirt this season or gets a fifth year of eligibility.
Our next player is a transfer from Bowie State.
Follow this writer on Twitter @Pete_Volk.