New Maryland football coach Michael Locksley has added his first two Football Bowl Subdivision transfers in Ohio State linebacker KeAndre Jones and Virginia Tech wide receiver Sean Savoy, an athletic department spokesman confirmed Tuesday.
Both players are enrolled at classes in College Park, but their status for the 2019 season is uncertain. As of now, both players would have to sit out a year under NCAA rules unless granted a hardship waiver.
The 6-foot-2, 228-pound Jones committed verbally to Maryland out of Good Counsel High three years ago, but flipped his commitment to the Buckeyes after Locksley wasn’t promoted to replace Randy Edsall as Maryland’s coach.
In three seasons at Ohio State, the former four-star prospect rated the ninth-best outside linebacker in the nation played sparingly on defense, appearing in 15 games and recording 19 tackles, including one sack. He would have one year of eligibility left.
The 5-9, 192-pound Savoy chose the Hokies over the Terps coming out of Wilson High in Washington two years ago.
After catching 39 passes for 454 yards and four touchdowns — as well as rushing for another 116 yards and two touchdowns — as a freshman, Savoy’s numbers dropped dramatically last season. He finished with 18 catches for 188 yards and two touchdowns.
It has been reported that Savoy’s production fell in the aftermath of the death of an older brother who was shot and killed in Washington, D.C., in October of 2017.
His brother’s death came hours after Savoy had caught nine passes for 139 yards, including a 53-yard touchdown, in a win over Boston College. Before his brother’s death, Savoy caught 27 passes for 337 yards and three touchdowns.
Jones joined quarterback Dwayne Haskins Jr. with the Buckeyes after Locksley, who served as Maryland’s interim coach for the last six games of the 2015 season after Edsall was fired (after a loss at Ohio State), was not given the job permanently.
While Haskins flourished after playing behind J.T. Barrett his first two years before becoming a Heisman finalist and emerging as one of the top NFL prospects during the 2018 season, Jones struggled to get more than a few snaps per game on defense.
The Terps have a bigger need at linebacker next season than they do at receiver, having lost Tre Watson, who as a graduate transfer in 2018 led the Big Ten in tackles and was named first-team All-Big Ten by the media.