Every spring a new high school football recruiting class blooms and
every year there are standout high school players who don’t
garner the attention one thinks they should when it comes to college
recruiters. Too small, too slow, too short. There’s always a reason. And Marcus Fuller’s is the latter. Today we hit the recruiting trail with him.
The difference between Ohio State and Ohio Wesleyan is a couple inches – literally. It might not seem fair, but that’s the truth. D-I and III are separated by centimeters.
Every spring a new high school football recruiting class blooms and every year there are standout high school football players who don’t garner the attention one thinks they should when it comes to college recruiters. Too small, too slow, too short. There’s always a reason.
And Marcus Fuller’s is the latter.
“It fuels me,” Fuller said. “It makes me want to perfect the little things that much more, because those little things are what count. It makes me want to show (colleges) what I’ve got.”
As a football player, Fuller has few peers at his position in the Class of 2011. As a student, he’s got none.
Ranked No. 1 in his class with a 4.0 GPA, Fuller scored a 30 on the ACT and is a member of the National Honor Society.
On the field Fuller earns straight “As” at quarterback.
Ready to embark on his third season as a starter for the Arrows, Fuller is coming off a season in which he completed 215-of-362 passes for 3,122 yards and 30 TDs (against just eight interceptions). He also rushed for nine TDs.
Fuller led the Arrows to an 11-2 record and an appearance in the D-II Region 5 Final where they lost 45-42 to Mentor Lake Catholic. In that game Fuller accounted for 372 total yards and four TDs.
So what’s the red flag? Fuller is 6-0 tall. He’s not 6-2. Or 6-4.
He’s a great football player. But he’s not a tall one.
There are more players like Fuller in every recruiting class than there are like the guy at the head of this class – Huber Heights Wayne quarterback Braxton Miller.
Last season in leading Wayne to a 7-4 record and a berth in the D-I playoffs (where it lost 35-14 at Cincinnati Elder in the first round), Miller threw for 1,091 yards and nine TDs. He also ran for 467 yards and 18 TDs.
Miller is 6-2. He has offers from Ohio State, Alabama, Florida, USC and Notre Dame.
“The one thing I keep hearing is that I’m only 6-0,” Fuller said. “I figure with posting good numbers (at combines) I can make colleges ignore the height issue and see me as a football player.”
Often times we – the fans – put too much stock in the obvious – football ability. College recruiters have that on their list, but it’s not No. 1. On their clipboards, height, weight, bench press, vertical jump, 40-yard dash time and a slew of other physical feats come first.
Fair or not, that’s the truth and one Fuller is fully aware of. It’s also something he’s going to attack head on. If Fuller doesn’t land a Division I football scholarship, it won’t be for lack of trying.
Ever since his freshman year when he dedicated himself to the pursuit of playing college football, Fuller has been walking the line.
He started going to QB camps in seventh grade and this year will continue the trend with scheduled stops at Harvard, Yale, Brown, Ohio, Princeton, Western Michigan, Boston College, Toledo, Central Michigan and Old Dominion. Other possible destinations include Northwestern, Ball State, Dartmouth, Grand Valley St., Pennsylvania, Youngstown State and Purdue.
“All the college coaches who see my tape like what they see,” Fuller said. “But they want to see you in person, at their camps, to see what you’ve got with their own eyes. Most schools only take one quarterback per class so they want to be sure.”
Fuller also plans on hitting the combine circuit heavy. This last Saturday he already captured his first award of the summer when he was named the Outstanding Quarterback at the Next Level Football combine in Steubenville.
This weekend he’s headed to Princeton to visit.
And he’ll tell us about it Monday.
Starting then and throughout the summer, Fuller is going to document his recruiting process here on JJHuddle. Every Monday the standout QB will write about the week he had, including things like who he talked to, where he went and what he did. He’ll also let us know what’s on the horizon.
Like we said, there are more players in Fuller’s position than Miller’s and hopefully some of them – and others – will benefit from Fuller’s experiences.
Here’s hoping he lands that D-I offer too.
“(Being a quarterback) you have command of the team and all eyes are on you,” Fuller said. “That’s something I’ve always wanted and thrived on. And it’s definitely something I don’t shy away from now.”
40 dash: 4.69 (hand timed)
20 yard shuttle: 3.89
Vertical Jump: 31.5”
Broad Jump: 9’
Bench x 185: 26
Academics: Class Rank 1 of 290, 4.0 GPA, 30 ACT