SAN ANTONIO - Among a group of high school All-Americans, Cleveland (Ohio) Glenville offensive tackle Marcus Hall is one of the biggest. Listed at 6-foot-5, 290 pounds, Hall looked every bit of it at the U.S. Army All-American Bowl registration and talked about his excitement at being at the event.
"I know this is the best so I'm just going to see where I'm at with the best," Hall said. "Going into college football, it's a good opportunity because it's the best here. It's definitely the first step into the college world just getting ready."
Leading up to the game, Hall has been working out, doing line drills with his coaches and running sprints with his basketball team where he stars at center. The basketball is nothing new to him and is a big reason for his athleticism at his size.
"I played ball until I got to high school because I was too heavy to play football in the community leagues so that's what I turned to, basketball," he said. "I definitely think it helped me. It gives you a chance to move around and get in shape and with my footwork, I think it helps a lot."
Still uncommitted, Hall has a busy January planned and anticipates making a decision after several big official visits.
"I took Ohio State on December 12 and the weekend after I leave the Army game, I'm going to Michigan, then Illinois, Miami University and then Tennessee. My biggest top three is Ohio State, Illinois and Miami."
With the Buckeyes, Illini and Hurricanes atop his list, Hall talked about the factors that have separated those three.
"I really look to see the coaches and the relationship I have with the coaches," he said. "I really enjoy being coached by those coaches sitting down and watching film with them and also just putting myself in a situation that I can be comfortable in and be happy to wake up every morning."
Ohio State has already gotten Hall on a campus, a visit he enjoyed.
"I got a chance to sit down with Coach Bollman, the O-line coach and Coach Lichter the speed and strength coach. He's a good intense coach."
Though not necessarily in the Midwest region, Miami has long been a favorite of Hall, one of a few reasons that the Hurricanes are among his favorites.
"Coach Stoutland and Coach Hill, they're great coaches," he said of the Miami staff. "I've always been a fan of Miami when I was small watching the U. I've always been a fan of them and I always hoped that they'd recruit me because I know they don't recruit a lot of guys outside of Florida. It was a big chance and I went after it. I'm going out there on the 23rd of January to see how I like it."
The third school listed atop his list is Illinois and Hall also pointed to his relationship with the coaches as a big reason why.
"Coach Wolford, he's a good coach and they're O-Line, they're suffering as he said so it's a big opportunity to play college football early."
Though he had hoped to make his college decision during the Army game, Hall will wait until after he has finished with his official visits before a final call is made.