Florida DE Ford Visits Rutgers

Gibsonton (Fla.) East Bay defensive end Marques Ford took his first big visit away from home Tuesday when he set foot on the Rutgers campus. Ford spoke after the visit about his personal junior day experience and what comes next in his recruitment.

More than anything else, the honesty of the Rutgers football program stood out for Gibsonton (Fla.) Easy Bay defensive end Marques Ford on his visit.

Ford enjoyed an in-depth tour of the football program and school, highlighted by time with head coach Kyle Flood and defensive line coach Jim Panagos.

"It was great," Ford said. "They treated me well. I felt that it would be a good place to be."

Ford expected an over-the-top sales pitch, and the down-to-earth approach from the staff surprised him.

"I liked how honest they were with me," Ford said. "It wasn't a bunch of crazy promises. They just want me in their program and want me to work hard."

The initial Rutgers offer came through Panagos, who spent time with Ford on campus. Ford met Flood for the first time Tuesday.

"Both of them are good guys," Ford said. "Coach Flood, he's a really cool guy. He cares about his players. … Coach Panagos is great. I actually learned a lot of stuff when I was sitting down with him. He's the best."

Plans to return to Rutgers have not been finalized, but Ford hopes to return either in the summer or for an official visit.

"It was a good time, and I definitely like Rutgers a lot right now," he said.

It was a big week in recruiting for Ford, who added Miami and South Florida offers to his growing list. Ford plans to visit USF for a spring practice this month and will set something up with Miami.

"It's exciting," Ford said. "I have some more visits that I'm excited to take next. … It was good to visit Rutgers because I got to see a college away from home."

Ford is a three-star prospect in the 2015 Scout.com rankings and checks in at 6-foot-4, 220 pounds. USF became his 10th verbal offer over the weekend.


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