Flint (Mich.) Northern linebacker Marcus Forward is looking to follow the same path his former teammate, Thomas Rawls, did in the class of 2011. Rawls was lightly recruited leading into his senior season before blowing up last fall and eventually signing with a BCS Conference program.
It has taken some time for Forward to build momentum in the recruiting process, but schools have started to gain interest this spring and the 6-2, 210-pound linebacker now holds two offers with several more BCS schools showing interest.
"Recruiting-wise, I've had attention from numerous schools," Forward said. "Illinois came down a couple weeks ago, Iowa, Northwestern, Michigan State, Michigan and Eastern Michigan came to visit me.
"I get a lot of letters from Iowa and Illinois. I went to Michigan State's spring game and Coach Barnett seemed to like me. Northwestern sends me a lot of letters asking for my transcripts. I get emails and letters from UCLA, Texas Christian and Texas A&M."
Forward noted that he is also receiving strong interest from Toledo and he attended the Rocket's junior day earlier this spring. His two scholarship offers have also come from MAC programs - Eastern Michigan and Western Michigan. Eastern Michigan just came through with an offer last week. The offer from Western Michigan was Forward's first and he received it while in Kalamazoo for a junior day.
"The linebackers coach talked with me after I watched a couple defensive drills. He took me in the back to talk with Coach [Bill] Cubit, the head coach, and he offered me," Forward said. They liked the fact that I was a sure tackler and able to read my keys very well."
Forward plans to generate more interest this summer by attending college camps and he is already working with his head coach, Fred Jackson Jr., on a schedule.
"Coach Jackson being a Michigan man, he's not going to let me miss the Michigan camp," Forward said. "I'm looking at going to the Michigan State camp and also looking at going down to Texas to a Texas Christian or Texas A&M camp."
If colleges in Texas start to recruit Forward heavily, that could add a new element to the Michigan native's recruitment. He has family in Texas and would be interested in checking out school in the Lone Star State.
As a junior, Forward tallied 89 total tackles and also had 26 catches for 397 yards and five touchdowns on offense. He is also a standout in the classroom with a 3.67 GPA and a 24 on his ACT.