February 1, 2009

Hall has Vols in final 2

Admittedly, Marcus Hall had given little thought to the University of Tennessee until his teammate, safety and recent Vols commitment Mike Edwards convinced him to check out the UT program.

Now the muscular, 6-foot-5-inch, 290-pound Hall has the Vols very much in the race for his signature on Wednesday, National Signing Day.

"I wouldn't say he's tried to recruit me, but brother to brother, me and Mike (Edwards) are real close," said Hall, the No. 6 offensive tackle in the nation according to Rivals.com. "I mean, my interest level in Tennessee was kind of low until he came back and told me how much he actually liked it. He told me how much he felt comfortable and how he fit in down here. And the coaching staff is just great. Me and Mike, we're real close. So when he told me how much he liked it, I definitely had to come see because he's not easily impressed. He actually cancelled a visit to Michigan to come down.

"Right now, I'm with Ohio State and Tennessee right now. Those are my top two, and I'm just going to go home and sit down and think about it till the last second on Wednesday. This is the biggest decision of my life so far, so I'm just going to try to make the best decision for myself and see where it goes from there."

Aside from checking out the campus and facilities, Hall -- a U.S. Army All-American selection -- likewise wanted to better get to know Tennessee's coaches, having had limited contact with them before his visit to Knoxville. He liked what he saw.

"It went real good. I got to meet the whole coaching staff. Previously I'd just met coach (Jim) Chaney and coach (James) Cregg, but overall the visit was real nice," he said. "Nice campus, real nice school. The team seems like it's a real brotherhood, and I got a chance to get a taste of the fans when we went to the (Tennessee-Florida basketball) game, so that was real nice."

Having cut Miami from his list, Hall acknowledged his weekend on Rocky Top makes the next 48-72 hours critical.

"Yeah, it does. It makes it a lot tougher because I was with Miami and Ohio State before I got here, and I kind of thought about Miami, and it really didn't fit into what I am trying to do as a player and as a person," he said. "Talking to coach (Lane) Kiffin and coach (Ed) Orgeron, it really did make it real hard. I've got a big decision to make."

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