Family was already on board, but it took a few minutes on Friday before Newark (N.J.) Weequahic three-star cornerback Ihmir Marsette felt all in with Rutgers.
What flipped the switch for one of New Jersey's top defensive backs? The players.
“When I first came here Friday and was introduced to the players, we connected from the start,” Marsette said. “The whole visit was amazing. We went bowling, laser tag, and the connection was just there. I hung out with all of the guys – Mo Jabbie, Isaiah Wharton, Bless Austin, Kiy Hester. They were great.”
Hester, another defensive back out of North Jersey, played the role of host.
“He was a great person for me to talk to,” Marsette said. “He basically told me that we're going to work hard, and I better come in ready to work. I will.”
Marsette said the visited ended with a commitment to coach Chris Ash.
“They were excited and I'm excited to play for him,” Marsette said. “I believe in his plan to change the program around, and I know he believes in me too.”
Belief was an inspiration for Marsette, who admitted that academics were not always a strongsuit. Ash offered Marsette conditionally in the summer with the need to improve in the classroom.
Marsette took it as a challenge, and took home a solid SAT score and a A-average in school.
“They were there for me from the start,” Marsette said. “It feels great that they believed in me and helped me up. They were there a lot, and supported me and helped me and had my back the whole time. I respect that.”
Marsette projects as a cornerback where he expects assistant Aaron Henry to be “a great mentor.”
“He's very energetic,” Marsette said. “He pushes his guys to compete in everything. He loves competition.”