Pickelman Closing In on College Choice

Defensive end Kevin Pickelman and his teammates at Marshall (Mich.) High School recently completed a 5-4 campaign, just missing the state playoffs. After four years as a varsity starter for the Redhawks, Pickelman is now focusing on where he will play his college football.

Defensive end Kevin Pickelman just completed a record-setting four-year varsity career at Marshall (Mich.) High School.

"I like to hit people," said the 6-foot-4, 240-pound Pickelman, who has good speed to go with his size and strength.

Pickelman recorded 296 tackles in three seasons as a defensive starter, shattering the old school record of 267 career tackles.

This season, Pickelman garnered 56 tackles, 49 assists, two interceptions, caused two fumbles, and returned one fumble for a touchdown in leading the Redhawks to a 5-4 season.

Pickelman will be the first one to tell you it was a disappointing season because Marshall did not qualify for the state playoffs. The Redhawks would have qualified, but a 74-20 win over Kalamazoo Loy Norrix the second week of the season was forfeited due to the use of a non-eligible player.

"It hasn't hit me yet that it (my high school career) is over," Pickelman said. "Once I get to college, I'll be a rookie all over again."

Pickelman said he has five scholarship offers from Mid-American Conference schools, including Central Michigan, Western Michigan, Eastern Michigan, Ball State and Northern Illinois.

Among the five schools, Pickelman has a clear favorite.

"CMU is No. 1," Pickelman said. "I really like the coaches and facilities at CMU. I'm an outdoorsman and just love it up there. I have a lot of family in the Saginaw area too."

Pickelman has scheduled an official visit to CMU for the weekend of Dec. 1-3. He said a decision on his college destination could come very soon after that visit.

"I'm hoping to make a decision after my official visit."

According to Pickelman, no school has recruited him harder than CMU. Co-defensive coordinator Mike Elston is recruiting Pickelman for the Chippewas.

"Coach Elston was down to see me last Friday," Pickelman said. "He told me that he likes my toughness and that I have a chance to be a special player at CMU."

Pickelman said he'd also been receiving recruiting interest from Michigan State and Purdue of the Big Ten.

"(Michigan) State told me two weeks ago they weren't recruiting me anymore," Pickelman said.

According to Pickelman, he would prefer to play defensive end in college, but will play wherever the team needs him.

Pickelman said he plans to attend the CMU/WMU game Nov. 10 in Mount Pleasant, which could decide the MAC West Champion.

One other aspect about playing for the Chippewas that Pickelman said appeals to him is following in the footsteps of CMU senior All-American defensive end Daniel Bazuin.

"He's a great player," Pickelman said of Bazuin. "I like the way he plays the game."

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