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Rakim Jarrett: From viral high school highlight to NFL draft
Rakim Jarrett had 119 receptions during his time at Maryland. (Credit: Brad Mills/USA TODAY Sports)

Rakim Jarrett: From viral high school highlight to NFL draft

COLLEGE PARK, Md. (BVM) – Rakim Jarrett is on the cusp of being selected in the 2023 NFL Draft. The Maryland receiver finished 11th in program history with 119 career receptions and now looks to bring his receiving skills to the next level for a long time to come.

Jarrett is seen as a consensus Day 3 draft selection.

But this has been years in the making.

Jarrett, who has been playing football since the age of 5, first hit the national spotlight as just a high school sophomore. 

In a game that featured five overtimes, he made a spectacular one-handed catch that went viral, even making an appearance in SportsCenter’s top 10 plays.

But this was just a snippet of what Jarrett could do. 

He had emerged as one of the country’s most coveted recruits by the time he was a senior. He was a top-five receiver in the nation according to 247 Sports before committing to nearby Maryland.

Having that type of prospect status could be a lot for an 18-year-old, but Jarrett had a strong understanding of what he needed to do.

“I was just being myself,” Jarrett said. “I wasn’t trying to live up to the expectations that people put on me. I knew what I wanted to be and what I wanted my career to be. I just tried to put my best foot forward.”

Jarrett got to campus and was a starter as a freshman. His season was highlighted by a win over Penn State in which he had five receptions, 144 yards and two touchdowns. Jarrett was named Big Ten Freshman of the Week.

His instant success served as a confidence boost for his personal long-term outlook.

“You don’t really know the level of competition until you do it,” Jarrett said. “With the hype that I received early, I kind of knew I could do something professionally.”

Jarrett has the physical abilities of course, but it is his work ethic that has put him in the position that he is in today. He is detailed, precise and most importantly relentless when it comes to doing what he sets out to do.

“It’s all work,” Jarrett said. “If I have a goal, I’m set out to accomplish that. I think that drives me within itself.”

Jarrett is just days away from being a part of an NFL organization and he has already put together an impressive football career during his time at Maryland. But the No. 1 accomplishment for him up to this point is going to college.

“It’s not the norm in my family. I’m the second child to go to college,” Jarrett said. “Just to be able to do that for free and reap the benefits of it allows me to go on and achieve my dreams.”

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