Cornerback Ihmir Marsette knows the reputation when it comes to inner-city New Jersey academics, and he plans to shake it.
If the competitive cornerback out of Newark (N.J.) Weequahic successfully shakes the reputation, a scholarship offer from Rutgers awaits.
“I want to prove that an inner-city kid can make it and play ball at a higher level, go straight to the next level,” Marsette said. “There's a lot of talent that just goes down the drain. I want to prove that people can make it out.”
Marsette holds an offer from Rutgers contingent upon his academic performance in summer school. If Marsette earns B's when grading ends next week, he has a committable offer, he said.
“This offer is contingent on how I do in summer school,” he said. “I told them that I'm working for A's. B's is a goal but I told them that I'll work to get A's because I'm doing this to do better for myself.”
Marsette has been close to a Rutgers offer since the June camp circuit. He worked out in front of the coaching staff in addition to a two-way showcase in the 7-on-7 passing game. He returned to campus for an unofficial visit and in-depth look at the program.
“We literally did everything,” he said. “[Recruiting assistant] Matt Hewitt met me at the door and he was my tour guide the whole day. We went up to the academic offices and talked to them first.
“We went onto the field, toured all of the sections – where my parents would sit. We went into the locker room. We went into the equipment room. We went into their new weight room. It wasn't done yet but I guess it is now. They showed me a new poster that said 'Jersey strong,' I liked that.”
The visit ended in Ash's office when the cornerback target spoke with the head coach and assistants Bill Busch and Aaron Henry.
“I just feel blessed to have an opportunity to be on their radar and know that they want me,” he said. “I actually like coach Henry a lot. He's very energetic like myself. He's a hard-working guy and I would definitely like to play under him. He's very cool.”
Temple, Delaware State and New Hampshire are among the schools recruiting Marsette, he said.