After weeks of indecision, Absecon, New Jersey linebacker Marcus Witherspoon reached a moment where everything came together. The longtime Michigan commit spoke to his fellow Garden State Wolverines (J.B. Fitzgerald and Brandon Smith) over the weekend and suddenly realized it was time to settle once and for all whether he'd spend his college years in Ann Arbor or Knoxville, Tennessee.
“They asked me what I was doing and I said I didn’t know yet,” Witherspoon recalled. “Then Sunday I really thought about it and came up with the decision. I really thought of it myself. My dad just sat back and let me do the thinking.”
“It was all business,” he continued. “Both schools had good people. They were both good teams. It was hard, but it was a business decision really. It came down to academics. If you have a Michigan degree, a Michigan degree can take you a lot of places. I’m not saying that a degree from Tennessee can’t, but when it comes down to it, Michigan has got a little bit more pull. I had to think about why I committed in the first place. Football isn't forever, man. You’re just one play away from injury.”
The news came as a stress reliever to the members of the Michigan staff in charge of securing the explosive youngster.
“Coach Hopson and Coach Fry were happy,” said Witherspoon. “Coach Fry said I was making him lose hair. I just made them feel better. Made them feel good about everything.”
It marked the end of a good week for the Maize & Blue when it came to solidifying wavering commitments. A few days earlier they received similarly good news from Detroit Catholic Central defensive tackle Mike Martin. After his wrestling meet last Thursday (in which GoBlueWolverine was in attendance) the powerful youngster phoned Notre Dame’s defensive coordinator Corwin Brown to deliver a message.
“I called Coach Brown to let him know I would not be coming for the visit,”
he said. “I was not excited about going on the visit so I made the decision
not to go.”
For Martin, the idea of being a back up plan after the Irish lost the commitment of Omar Hunter wasn’t one he could swallow.
“That did not sit well with me,” Martin admitted. “Plus I love Michigan. I am committed to Michigan.”
After his conversation with Brown, Martin dialed up his Michigan recruiter Tony Dews and filled him in on the good news.
“He was very happy about that,” said Martin. “He told me that I am a Michigan man now.”
Martin saw first hand that there were even more joyous Michigan coaches when Dews, Gibson, Shafer and Tall all made it to his house Sunday.
“It was a great visit,” he said. “They were very happy about my decision. We just had a really good time.”
Now that he is set on his Michigan future, Martin’s athletic attention has turned solely to defending his state title. In the process he will further his readiness for competition when he arrives in Ann Arbor in the fall. Similarly, Witherspoon will be working hard to prepare as well.
“I’m going to be working out,” Witherspoon said. “I’m going to speed training… trying to get faster and better for next level.”