Michigan Linebacker a Prime MAC Target

No less than six Mid-American Conference schools have offered Portage (Mich.) Northern High School linebacker Greg Marshall a scholarship. This past weekend, Marshall took his first official visit to Central Michigan University. He talked about his visit to CMU with Chippewas Insider.

How do you best describe a football player like Greg Marshall? Portage Northern head coach Pete Schermerhorn thinks he has the perfect word to describe his star player.

"Greg is a warrior," Schermerhorn said. "He has great speed and power. Obviously, he's very talented. Greg played most of last season with a sprained ankle and he was still named our MVP at the end of the year."

A bruising 6-foot-1, 235 pounds, Marshall was a three-year varsity starter and two-way standout at fullback and linebacker for Portage Northern. This season he rushed for 1,227 yards and 16 touchdowns as the Huskies finished 6-4.

As a linebacker, the position Marshall said he prefers to play in college, he's been the Huskies leading tackler the past two seasons. This summer, Marshall participated with two thousand other prospects at the University of Michigan camp in Ann Arbor and was rated the third best linebacker at the camp.

"One of the great things about Greg is his motor is always running," Schermerhorn said. "He's high energy and a great motivator."

Last week, Marshall was named to the Detroit Free Press Division 2 All-State team as a linebacker.

The colleges have taken notice of Marshall's exploits on the gridiron too. He has scholarship offers from no less than six Mid-American Conference schools, including Central Michigan, which he visited this past weekend.

"The visit to CMU was excellent," Marshall said. "I love the coaches and it's an up and coming program. There's a lot to like about CMU."

It was Marshall's first official visit and although he has nothing to compare it to just yet, he said he would rate his CMU visit an eight or nine on a scale of one to 10, with 10 being the highest.

Marshall said he has scheduled official visits to fellow MAC schools Buffalo (Dec. 14), Eastern Michigan (Jan. 7), Western Michigan (Jan. 21), and either Toledo or Ball State for Jan. 28. He noted that all those schools have offered a scholarship.

Marshall said he has not set a timeline for making a decision, but that it will probably be a gut feeling on where he will ultimately play his college football.

"I can pull the trigger at anytime," Marshall said. "CMU is looking real good for my gut feeling right now. I could decide a month from now or I could decide tomorrow."

Marshall said he has been influenced by his cousin Keyonta Marshall, who just completed a standout career as a defensive tackle for perennial Division II power Grand Valley. Keyonta played for current CMU head coach Brian Kelly and defensive coordinator John Jancek when they were coaching at GVSU.

"I talked to Keyonta this week and I told him what a great visit I had (to CMU)," Marshall said. "He told me that he knew I would love the coaches and if I made the decision to go to CMU I would be in good hands."

Marshall said he also likes WMU, the school just down the street from where he lives.

"Western is a school I was always considering," Marshall said. "I talked to their new coach (Bill Cubit) and I think he'll turn that program around."

Ultimately, Marshall said he is going to pick the school where he feels most comfortable on and off the field.

"I want to go someplace where I can go in playing right away, but I understand there is no guarantee of that," Marshall said. "Having coach Jancek and coach Kelly is definitely a plus for CMU."

Marshall said he plans to major in business administration in college.

"I like the business school and new library at CMU," Marshall said.

Only time will tell where Marshall decides to play his college football, but only one school will be fortunate enough to sign him to a national letter-of-intent in February.

"Greg is a very likeable kid," Schermerhorn said. "I think he'll fit in well anywhere."

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