Orchard Lake (Mich.) St. Mary’s star Josh Ross burst onto the high school scene last year as a true freshman starter for one of Michigan’s most tradition rich high school programs. It was a feat that not even his older brother James Ross could match. But that accomplishment is now in the rearview. Next on his list of goals is taking his game to the next level and taking his team to a championship. On the heels of his team’s 21-19 victory over Southfield he was pleased with his squad’s progress towards its collective goal, but dissatisfied with his individual contribution.
“Honestly, I think I could have done better,” he said. “At the same time after the first quarter, they didn’t really run the ball like that to my side. I feel that I could do better, but I really couldn’t do anything about it.”
“(As a team) we came out hard, fought hard. We came out strong. We went up in the game real early and we played hard. It was fun.”
The four-star linebacker plans on having much more fun in the weeks to come. With a year of seasoning under his belt Ross believes he wreak a lot more havoc in 2014.
“This year I think I’m way faster,” he said. “Way faster, way stronger, and way bigger. Last year I was a little guy. I was just coming out as fast as I could because I was a freshman and all, but this year I’m a veteran.”
And that veteran status doesn’t only apply to the football field. Ross has been to Michigan Stadium on multiple occasions, first as his brother’s guest, and then over last year-plus as a visiting recruit. The class-of-2017 standout was in Ann Arbor again last Saturday and came away extremely impressed.
“I think Michigan has improved a lot from last season,” said Ross. “They have better players, like Peppers and all. I just think everybody got better from last year. I think they’re going to be a lot better team than last year.”
“Every time I go up there, it is just a real good experience. Seeing my brother get to play and be around all the good coaches. It is just real good there.”
It’s become routine members of the Michigan coaching staff to inform Ross of what a priority he is, but that doesn’t mean such treatment has become any less flattering.
“Every time I go to Michigan it is basically the same thing. I feel like they are a family to me,” he said. “They like me a lot. They’re always joking. Mattison jokes about me, saying he offered me three years ago when they offered my brother (laughter). It is always like family to me.”
While it’s clear the Wolverines are in strong position with the talented youngster, he remains interested in finding out more about other schools. One that he has become increasingly comfortable with is Michigan State.
“I really like the coaching staff,” said Ross. “Every time I go around them, I’m just real comfortable. I like the coaching staff, they’re winning, and they’re a good program.”
That leads to an obvious question… are the Spartans now tied with Michigan in his eyes?
“I don’t know about a tie, but those are my two favorite schools right now,” he replied.