Profiles In Terpage – A Countdown To The Football Season: Jake Wheeler


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 a former high school basketball star in Florida.

Jake Wheeler, Freshman (RS), Offensive Tackle


Height: 6’7″

Weight: 255

Ratings: Two stars by Rivals; two stars by Scout; unranked by ESPN

40-yard dash time: 4.8

High School Stats (Senior Year): N/A

High School: American Heritage High School (Hollywood, Fla.)

How’d He Get To College Park?

Jake Wheeler was teammates with at least four future D-1 basketball players at American Heritage, including University of Florida stud Kenny Boynton. In fact, Wheeler’s got a nifty little b-ball highlight tape right here, and was recruited for both basketball and football coming out of high school. Wheeler had offers from Florida Atlantic and Columbia, among others, to play basketball, but decided he had more potential on the football field, and signed with the Terps – the only school to offer him a football scholly, as far as we know. Scout reports that he did receive interest from Alabama and Miami, however.

Wheeler is the third-oldest of ten Wheelerites, including older brother Jared – an offensive guard at Miami. Like so many others from Florida, Wheeler was recruited to the Terps by Don Brown, who was able to create a pipeline of sorts from your favorite football peninsula to College Park before bolting to Storrs.

At American Heritage, Wheeler started at both left tackle and defensive end, while spending some time at tight end and outside linebacker. His athleticism led some to believe he would play tight end at Maryland, but in his big frame the Terps’ coaches saw promise on the offensive line. Wheeler played in the 2009 Florida North-South All-Star game.

More after the jump.


“Big Wheels”. It’s what he says his nickname is, and in times like these who are we to argue?

Career Highlight:

Blocking a field goal in his sophomore year to clinch the district championship.

Career Lowlight:

For lack of a better lowlight, Don Brown leaving for UConn.

Arbitrary Top Five List:

D-1 Basketball players that played with Jake Wheeler at American Heritage:

1. Kenny Boynton

2. Eloy Vargas

3. Ray Taylor

4. Marcus Blake

5. Kobe Eubanks (class of 2014, offers from Florida, Ohio State, and Georgia)

Dream Season:

Wheeler beats out Cody Blue as the backup left tackle until Justin Gilbert returns from injury, and then holds on to the third slot.

Nightmare season:

Wheeler performs poorly, moving inside to tight end.

2011 Prospectus:

Jacob Wheeler currently stands as third on Maryland’s depth chart at left tackle, but that’s not entirely accurate. Justin Gilbert is still recovering from an injury, so he technically sits at fourth at the position. Gilbert is expected to be the starter, although depending on how Max Garcia performs in his absence there may be a battle there. Regardless, Wheeler is not in the conversation for playing time as of now, as he is also behind Cody Blue on the depth chart.

As for the future, that’s up in the air for him as well. Ryan Doyle and Andrew Zeller are coming in this season, with Mike Madaras incoming in the 2012 class. Gilbert and R.J. Dill have (hopefully) two more years of healthy starting in front of them, and then sophomores Max Garcia and Pete DeSouza look like the front runners to take over those spots. The answer? We don’t know, but we propose that move to tight end. As TT pointed out when the commitment was announced, the power forward-tight end move worked for Antonio Gates.

Up Next:

Our next player was born in San Francisco.