JUCO Marcel Benson an important piece of puzzle

<b>RECRUITING 2005</b> 6 foot 7, 320-pound offensive lineman <b>Marcel Benson</b> enjoyed an outstanding sophomore season at San Diego Mesa C.C., earning several post-season honors. The University of Louisville commit combines a strong willingness to learn with tremendous athletic ability and could make a quick impact for the Cardinals.

6 foot 7, 320-pound Marcel Benson is one of the biggest, and quite possibly one of the best, prospects in the University of Louisville's 2005 recruiting class.

Benson, a junior college transfer from Mesa (CA) C.C., was a 2004 All-Foothill Conference First Team selection and a JC Gridwire - Junior College All-America Second Team selection. He was also named his team's Co-MVP and Offensive Lineman of the Year and was a First Team All-State selection by jucaltransfer.com.

"His biggest strength is his willingness to learn," said Mesa head coach Martin Moss. "Combine that with tremendous athletic ability and he has outstanding potential."

Benson, who originally hails from El Dorado, Nevada, possesses the intangibles all coaches look for when recruiting someone to protect their most valauble commodity - in Bobby Petrino's case, sophomore-to-be quarterback Brian Brohm.

"He has quick feet, works hard and is a quality person," Moss added. "He excels as a pass-blocker."

Benson is scheduled to graduate from Mesa C.C. this spring and is expected to arrive at U of L late next summer.

"He'll get it done academically by May," predicted Moss.

Benson turned down scholarship offers from Oklahoma State, Kansas and Houston in choosing the Cardinals. He's expected to sign a national letter of intent to attend Louisville next Wednesday.

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