'15 Ath. Ray Buford is on Michigan's Radar

Southfield (Mich.) High 2015 athlete, Ray Buford talks U-M interest, possible visit, other schools of interest, camping at Michigan and more.

Southfield (Mich.) High 2015 athlete, Ray Buford is a name that has surfaced as potential prospect for the University of Michigan lately.

Buford, was in attendance at the Sound Mind, Sound Body football camp last week, and had opportunity to perform in front of the U-M coaching staff.

"I'm just showing how versatile I can be," Buford said. "I'm showing I can play both sides of the ball. I'm just proving to coaches I am as good as a defensive back as I am a receiver.

"It has been a big switch, but not that hard because I'm an athlete and I think I can play on all sides of the ball. So it was pretty good."

Buford's performance at the camp helped him earn his second offer from Toledo, just days after receiving an offer from nearby Eastern Michigan.

At 6-foot-1/2, 175-pounds, Buford is embracing playing defensive back, despite never playing the position for his team in his high school career.

"Just getting used to playing corner," said Buford, who caught roughly 45 catches for 900 yards last year for Southfield. "I've been playing receiver all my life, just getting used to being on that side of the ball and changing your mindset.

"I'm open to doing anything at the next level. I'm just trying to get a free education."

While Buford only has the two MAC offers, he also hearing considerable interest from Bowling Green, Ohio State, Michigan and Michigan State. He says MSU is looking at him as a wide receiver. He also will be going on a seven day tour of schools throughout the Midwest, including U-M on Thursday and OSU on Friday.

While on his pending visit to Michigan's camp, Buford said he hopes to impress the Wolverine coaches enough to get an offer. And if that offer does come, don't expect a quick decision anytime soon.

"I would have to wait because there are so many different components after you get an offer," Buford said. "You have to see how it looks on campus and who is around there and how the coaches are. You have to be able to mesh with the coaches pretty well. I don't want to go to a spot where I don't feel comfortable."

Michigan 2013 defensive end commit, Lawrence Marshall is Buford's teammate at Southfield. However, Buford said Marshall won't have too much impact on his decision if he were to choose Maize & Blue.

"Not really," said Buford on Marshall impacting his decision. "because we play two totally different positions and I have to see how the depth chart is looking and how I match up with guys that are coming in ... (Although,) it makes it a little bit more attractive because it is somebody I'm familiar with and I grew up with."

At the moment, Buford said he doesn't have any favorites. But he did admit who his childhood favorite team was growing up.

"Well of course, I grew up a fan of Michigan being from Michigan," Buford said. "My house is a big Michigan family."

As far as what he is looking for when he visits schools in his recruitment, Buford said it's all about a "laid back" coaching staff.

"I am going to look for how the practice is run," Buford explained. "I am also going to look for the demeanor of the coaches. I can handle a mean coach, but I would rather my coach be a little more laid back and chill a little bit."

In the meantime, Buford says he is looking to improve his game heading into his junior season at Southfield.

"I'm very versatile, I play with speed and I can go get the ball. I need to improve upon getting in and out of breaks and on the defensive side (of the ball.) I need to improve on press coverage (and) get my hands on them right away."

The Michigan Insider Top Stories