July 17, 2013
KENTON ‚?? Everything that Noah Furbush had done before was turned around. But it was definitely a change for the better.
Furbush, a 6-foot-4, 235-pound linebacker from Kenton, verbally committed to play football for Michigan earlier this month. And that scholarship offer came after only one season of playing defense after he began his high school career with two years at wide receiver.
He was a first-team All-Western Buckeye League selection at defensive end last fall in his first season on defense.
That one campaign was impressive enough to draw offers from Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Maryland, Michigan State, Missouri, Nebraska, Northwestern, Pittsburgh, Purdue, Tennessee, Bowling Green and Toledo.
‚??I just made the switch to outside linebacker last year and I guess it was for the best,‚?Ě Furbush said.
‚??I had it narrowed down to about three schools, with Northwestern and Purdue as my other two schools I was looking at. It was a really tough choice between the three,‚?Ě he said.
‚??It was a pretty big adjustment, but the coaches definitely helped me through the transition. I put on about 30 pounds going into my junior year. It‚??s really fun to be a linebacker. The physicality of football is definitely a fun thing to do,‚?Ě he said.
Wide receiver is a gold level glamour position on most teams. At Kenton, with the Wildcats‚?? wide-open offense, it‚??s platinum level.
But Kenton coach Mike Mauk said Furbush embraced the move immediately.
Mauk approached Furbush about becoming a linebacker after all three of the starting linebackers on Kenton‚??s 2011 Division IV state runner-up team graduated.
‚??All of our linebackers graduated and we began looking at the guys we had returning and he was one of our most athletic guys. I talked to him about making the switch to defense and he was all for it, whatever he could do to help the team,‚?Ě Mauk said.
Bowling Green and Toledo were the first two schools to offer scholarships. Michigan was the third. ‚??From there, everything kind of took off,‚?Ě Furbush said.
‚??My No. 1 goal going into recruiting was to find a school where I could get an outstanding education and set me up with great opportunities after football. And Michigan definitely could do that.
‚??I think what separated Michigan from the rest was the fact that it was, at most, two hours away. And my brother is also attending Michigan for grad school,‚?Ě he said.
Moving to linebacker wasn‚??t the only change for Furbush in the recruiting process. Like most kids in Ohio, he was an Ohio State fan while growing up.
Even though he doesn‚??t officially join Michigan‚??s program until national signing day in February, he has adopted the terminology of Wolverines coach Brady Hoke, where the ‚??State‚?Ě is removed from Ohio State when referring to the Buckeyes.
‚??Prior to that, I was an Ohio fan so it was kind of crazy to make the change from rooting for that team in Columbus and changing over to Michigan. But it definitely has been a great experience. I‚??m trying to say Ohio instead of what I used to say,‚?Ě Furbush said.