Profiles In Terpage – A Countdown To The Football Season: Walk-On Defensive Backs


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 move on to the defensive backs, kicking it off with the transfers and walk-ons.

Clarence Claiborne, Junior; Desmond Haynes, Senior; Kwabena Ofori, Junior; Daniel Thomas, Junior


Heights: 6’0″; 5’9″; 5’10”; 5’9″

Weights: 208; 200; 197; 186

Ratings: N/A

High Schools: Kennedy High School (Silver Spring, Md.); Paint Branch High School (Silver Spring, Md.); Kennedy High School (Silver Spring, Md.); Gwynn Park High School (Accokeek, Md.)

How’d They Get To College Park?

Claiborne went to Bowie State (with high school teammate Jeff Hernandez, who we will be covering later), and transferred to Maryland after two seasons there. He played tight end and linebacker at Kennedy, hauling in 35 passes for 520 yards and seven touchdowns in his senior en-route to All-Gazette Second Team honors, and was brought in to College Park as a linebacker. After the change from Ralph Friedgen to Randy Edsall, however, Claiborne was moved to safety. Claiborne recorded an assisted tackle in this year’s Red-White game.

Haynes played defensive end and some linebacker at Paint Branch, so the move to defensive back is a major switch for him. He didn’t play football his first two years at Maryland, but joined the squad as a walk-on last year. In his senior season at Paint Branch, Haynes recorded 65 tackles (18 for a loss), four sacks, and one interception. He was also a successful track athlete in high school, finishing 13th in the 3A State championship in the 100-meter dash in 2006. Haynes didn’t record any tackles during the Red-White game, but rushed one time for one yard.

More after the jump.

Ofori, a teammate of Claiborne’s in high school, walked-on to the Maryland program with Claiborne and Hernandez after the latter two transferred from Bowie State. Ofori played fullback and nearly every defensive position for Kennedy, and has spent time both at defensive back and in the backfield for Maryland. In the Red-White game, he got one carry for two yards.

Thomas, the only one of the four not from Montgomery County, transferred to Maryland this year after two seasons with Salisbury. He’s got speed – he ran a 4.45 40-yard dash in high school – and he recorded two tackles, including one for a loss, in the Red-White game. That’s literally all we know about Daniel Thomas.


Clarence Claiborne, Kwabena Ofori, and Jeff Hernandez (to be profiled later) are all a part of the Kennedy Krew. There is no arguing this.

Desmond “We’ve Got Our Haynes On Now”

Daniel “No Not That One” Thomas

Career Highlight:

Making the team, playing in the spring game.

Career Lowlight:


Arbitrary Top Four List:

High Schools With Most Players on Maryland Roster:

1. Forestville Military Academy (4)

2. Fork Union Military Academy (4)

3. Gwynn Park High School (3)

4. John F. Kennedy High School (3)

Dream season:

Each of them get some amount of playing time (probably against Towson) and makes the most of it. One of the four gets an interception, but all four record at least one tackle.

Nightmare season:

The Towson game is much closer than expected and all four ride the pine all season.

2011 prospectus:

If  there was ever a situation where walk-ons could reasonably get playing time, it’s Maryland’s 2011 secondary. With Antwine Perez graduating and Kenny Tate, Mario Rowson, Desmond Kearse, and a bevy of others changing positions, Maryland is left with a lot of inexperience and a lack of depth at the back of their defense, especially at safety. All four of these guys are listed on the depth chart – Claiborne is the fourth-string strong safety, Haynes is the third-string strong safety, Ofori is the third-string corner at Cameron Chism’s slot (although when Avery Graham recovers from injury Ofori will likely be pushed to fourth), and Thomas is the third-string corner on Trenton Hughes’ side. A few of these guys will probably see playing time, we’ll just see who it is and how much they get.

Up Next:

The subject of our next profile went to a high school named after a Cuban Roman Catholic priest.