football

Furman said academics sold him

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TOWSON, Md. - Millersville (Md.) Old Mill athlete Josh Furman terrorized defenses in the Baltimore area in his final high school season.
And now he'll do the same thing in the Big Ten.
Furman, a 6-foot-3, 194-pound athlete, racked up 2,272 rushing yards and 31 touchdowns, numbers that ranked top three in the state. The three-star recruit capped off his career by leading Old Mill to a 4A state title.
But ever since his magical season ended, the attention has turned to recruiting.
By the end of the fall, Furman had over a dozen Division-I scholarships to choose from before reducing his list in late November to Michigan and Virginia Tech.
On Monday night at Towson University's Johnny Unitas Stadium, site of the second annual Maryland Crab Bowl - an all-star game featuring the best senior stars from the Baltimore and Washington areas - Furman pledged his allegiance to the school in Ann Arbor.
"I feel great that I finally get to announce that I'm a Michigan Wolverine," Furman said. "I had my mind made up a month ago, so it's been tough keeping it all inside and not talking about it. But I wanted to wait until the Crab Bowl to announce my decision. "
Furman said he had plenty of people supporting him along the way.
"I want to thank all my family and friends and all the people that got me to this position," Furman continued. "I'm excited I'm going to Michigan. It's a college I didn't think I would get an offer from a year ago when all the recruiting started. Now I get a chance to play in the Big-10 and make an impact."
Furman took an official visit to Michigan back in September. While on campus, he attended a Notre Dame-Michigan game. Evidently the Big House left quite an impression.
"It's going to be awesome to play in front of 110,000 screaming fans," Furman said. "It's an electric atmosphere. I can't wait."
But Furman wasn't sold immediately sold on Ann Arbor. He still liked the college down in Blacksburg, Va., too. Ultimately, however, his decision came down to academics, not athletics.
"The academics they have at Michigan are real good and that's what separated the two schools," Furman said. "Virginia Tech is a good school, but at Michigan, with that degree, it can really take me to bigger and better places."
Furman informed Wolverines coach Rich Rodriguez of his decision a month ago. Furman said Rodriguez was excited to have him and planned to use him on defense as a safety/linebacker. However, Furman was quick to point out to the second-year Michigan coach he could help in other ways.
"He was real excited about me playing defense, but I talked to him about returning kicks, too," Furman said. "He said he'd have to see when I get up there next year. But I'll help out in any way I can."
Furman is currently nursing a PCL injury that he suffered in the 4A title game. The injury kept him from participating in the Crab Bowl game, which the Washington team won, 24-21.
"There's a lot of great players out here, and I'm honored to be out here even though I'm hurt and can't play," Furman said. "But it's going to be all right. I'm rehabbing and I'll be back lifting weights and running in a couple weeks. I want to put more weight on and get ready to play college football."
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