Childhood Favorite

This Maryland skill position player grew up watching West Virginia, and counted the Mountaineers as his favorite team. Will that early liking translate into a top spot on his college preference list?

Baltimore's Marcus Snipes, a wide receiver and defensive back from St. Frances Academy in Baltimore, has long had an eye on WVU.

"Growing up, West Virginia was number one for me," the 6-2, 180-pound playmaker confirmed. "I watched them all the time, and grew up wanting to play for them. And with the offense going to the passing game more, I think it would be a great place for me."

An offer from WVU could be forthcoming after a camp visit, and Snipes said Virginia is also close to making one. He has traveled to a camp at Boston College, and is also getting serious interest from North Carolina, Michigan State and Tennessee. That's an impressive list of schools, but West Virginia could be considered first among equals once it makes an offer.

Snipes' visit to WVU did nothing to hurt the Mountaineers' positioning.

"I really liked the weight room," he said of one feature that typically catches the eye of visitors. "But what really impressed me were the players and coaches. The coaches were nice and up front about everything, and the players were fired up and ready to go, even though they were just practicing. You can see the effects the coaches and players have on each other.

"When I watched practice, the thing that caught me was they way they go 100% on every play. There's no slacking off. Everything is structured, and they are working hard all the time."

Snipes, like many of West Virginia's potential recruits, excels at more than one position. A wide receiver with excellent speed, he is also very good safety with lots of range. And although he figures to entertain offers on both sides of the ball, he does have a preference.

"I'd like to play offense," he revealed. I like scoring, and catching the big pass and making a big play. Of course, on defense I do get the chance to hit back and get a little revenge for some of the hits I take on offense, but overall I'd like to play on offense."

At 6-2, Snipes has a height advantage over many of the foes he faces, and that could come into play in college as well. He is a very good downfield receiver who attacks the ball well, and is dedicated to improving his overall game during his senior season.

"I have good speed, and I am bigger than most of the players I am up against, but I want to be sure my body is ready for college, so I will be working out all summer," he explained. "I also want to work on my overall knowledge of the game."

Snipes is being recruited by Lonnie Galloway and Jeff Casteel, and has already seen, at least secondhand, the way in which WVU recruits players. He is friends with Tavon Austin, who will enroll at West Virginia this summer, and has talked to him several times about the recruiting process and Austin's commitment to West Virginia. Whether or not all this results in an offer or a WVU commitment remains to be determined, but for now Snipes is clearly very interested in the Mountaineer program.

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