Maryland football commit Dontay Demus is easy to spot on the field. The 6-foot-4 wide receiver towers over cornerbacks who can't catch the giant, who said he runs a 4.58 40-yard dash.
"He can go up and get the ball," Friendship Collegiate Academy quarterback Dyson Smith said. "He can be physical. He can block. He can just make catches."
It's easy for Smith to find an athletic freak like Demus on routes. But off the field, the pair have found an even deeper connection. Smith said he and Demus are best friends, texting each other often and hanging out on the weekends.
Demus values his relationships. In addition to Smith, Demus has built close bonds with his future coaches at Maryland, one of the main reasons he committed to coach DJ Durkin's squad in June.
"[Assistant] coach Aazaar Abdul-Rahim and coach Durkin are like big brothers to me," the 2018 commit said. "They show me a lot of love. They make me stay on my toes and check up on me every day."
The 3-star prospect is the No. 5 player from Washington, D.C., and attends Friendship Christian Academy. Abdul-Rahim founded Friendship Christian Academy's football program in 2004 and turned it into one of the top D.C.-area teams before leaving for college experience in 2014.
Demus received offers from Louisville, Michigan State, Virginia Tech and Wisconsin, but the D.C. native wanted to play close to his family.
"I love seeing family in the crowd," he said. "There's nothing better than that. I got family at the University of Maryland playing football and attending school, so I just feel like it was the right choice."
This season, Maryland ranks 10th in the Big Ten in pass efficiency and is tied for last in red zone efficiency and in the conference. With his towering frame, Demus is a red zone threat. Demus thinks his size and speed can help with Maryland's struggles and carry the Terps to his ultimate goal.
"I'm ready to play early," Demus said, "and I wanna win a championship."