Marcus Williams turned heads with his performance last season. Last fall, the Southwest Edgecombe (Pinetops, N.C.) sophomore running back had 75 carries for 781 yards and 11 touchdowns.
Because of that, plenty of schools in North Carolina have been paying Williams attention: East Carolina, North Carolina, North Carolina State, Duke, Wake Forest and UNC Charlotte. Outside the state, Clemson has been recruiting him, too.
"I have a really good relationship with (running backs) coach (Re'Quan) Boyette at Duke," said the 5-foot-10, 185-pound Williams. "The coaches at ECU really like me. James Madison, too. Everything's well. I just have to keep doing what I do and keep my grades up and I don't think I'll have a problem getting offers."
"My relationship with ECU is pretty good," Williams added. "The coaches like me and they're trying to get me out to the camps to have a camp and visit. Just stay tuned. I'm a (rising junior) so there's not much I can do right now. But it's pretty good. I like ECU."
Williams made his impact last season as a running back, but he's a versatile player that can play at many different positions. He expects to play a few different positions on offense this coming season.
"I'm playing quarterback this year (and I play) running back and wide receiver. I'm everywhere on the team. I'm basically a team player. Anything I have to do to win, I'll do it."
Williams is mainly being recruited as a running back, but a lot of coaches see potential in him as a slot receiver and special teams member. In addition to his impressive rushing performance last season, he also had 11 catches for 260 yards and a pair of touchdowns.
There's still two years left in Williams' high school campaign. Heading into his junior season, he'll be preparing to step into a bigger role, but that's something he's already used to.
"I was a young sophomore (last season), but I had to step up for the team," said Williams. "I didn't get as many carries as I thought I would, but I was really effective with the ball. Any time I had the ball—carrying, catching, punt return, kick return—everybody was expecting me to make a big play because I'm always effective with the ball."
Williams will spend this summer preparing himself for what he expects to be his biggest season yet. He's doing two-a-days every day and working out on his own time. He's looking to improve further on his cuts and his balance, among other things.
"This year and next year will be way better than my sophomore season," Williams said. "I promise you that. I'm expecting more carries and more catches. I have to step up this year. Many seniors have left."
Williams had a break-out season last year and promises to build on it come this fall. His recruitment will be an interesting one to follow. The Pirates, as well as many other schools, will continue to work hard to earn the services of this diverse athlete.