Maryland releases Alaeze from letter of intent

Updated: June 21, 2006, 3:58 PM ET
By Bruce Feldman | ESPN The Magazine

Melvin Alaeze, the highest-profile recruit Maryland has signed in the Ralph Friedgen era, won't play for the Terps, ESPN Magazine has learned.

The all-everything 6-foot-3, 280-pound defensive end has been released from his letter of intent because he violated the terms of his financial aid agreement, sources said. Drug charges also played a role.

He was charged in March with marijuana possession and intent to distribute marijuana, as well as possession of drug paraphenalia, according to court documents cited by The Baltimore Sun. None of the charges are active, the paper reported.

Alaeze committed to the Terps in 2005 but failed to qualify. He played last fall at Hargrave Military Academy but left that school after the season.

The Terps are coming off a 5-6 season and have a big need on the defensive line. They ranked ninth in the ACC in sacks with just 21 for the season.

Other schools, including Virginia Tech and Penn State, that Alaeze had considered before could get back in the picture for his services.