Furbush recorded 93 tackles, 12 sacks and 16 tackles for a loss.

MARK ALTSTAETTER 419-993-2085 •

November 27, 2013

KENTON – It can be difficult to project how a young football player will respond to playing an unfamiliar position.

Kenton coach Mike Mauk saw potential on the defensive side of the football for Noah Furbush.

As a sophomore, Furbush found himself lining up at wide receiver, a very popular position on the Kenton high-powered spread offense.

However, as time passed, Mauk thought Furbush might have an even brighter future on defense.

The move paid off.

The 6-foot-4, 240-pound Furbush was a dominant force on defense for the Wildcats this season. The senior defensive end/linebacker will be heading to the University of Michigan next school year to play for the Wolverines.

For the regular season, Furbush recorded 93 tackles, 12 sacks and 16 tackles for a loss.

For all of his accomplishments this season, Furbush was named the defensive player of the year on The Lima News Dream Team.

Furbush was named the defensive lineman of the year in the Western Buckeye League, and was also the district defensive player of the year in Division IV.

Furbush helped lead his team to the WBL title and a No. 1 ranking in the final Associated Press poll.

Kenton (13-0) will play Clinton-Massie (12-1) at 7:30 p.m. Friday night in a Division IV state semifinal at the University of Dayton’s Welcome Stadium.

Defensively, Kenton led the WBL in nearly every category. The Wildcats were first in the WBL in scoring defense (7.2 points per game); total team defense (189.7 yards per game); team passing defense (101.5) and team rushing defense (88.2).

“Noah was a wide receiver for us as a sophomore,” Mauk said. “We made the switch over to defense in his junior year. He went from 195 pounds (sophomore season) and played at about 215 as a junior, and he played at about 235, 240 this year. He’s put on weight, but he’s put on good muscle mass.”

Furbush said he was willing to make the change, if that would benefit both him and the team.

“It’s definitely been a crazy transition,” Furbush said. “I still remember when coach Mauk called me into his office and told me, ‘Maybe we ought to try you out on defense’.

“I said, ‘OK. …If I get to play on defense, then that’s what I’m going to do’. Looking forward, I never thought I would be in the position that I am in today. It’s been a blessing. I’m very fortunate to be in this position.”

Furbush was a force this season, despite being hampered with an injured wrist. He suffered a broken wrist during the preseason and has played with a cast on his left wrist ever since.

“If my doctor could have had it his way, I definitely wouldn’t have played,” Furbush said with a smile. “We were able to come upon an agreement that I would wear this cast for the entire season. Thankfully, I was able to play.”

Furbush’s decision to go to Michigan was based on several factors.

“It started in the spring and just carried on through the summer and eventually I made the decision to go to Michigan,” Furbush said. “It was kind of like shopping for a new coat. You go around and look at all the coats you want and eventually you decide on the one you want, and Michigan was my choice. I really liked Michigan’s engineering program. That really played a lot into my decision, too.”

Mauk points to Furbush’s dedication and work ethic as two of his best attributes. He also plays basketball and baseball.

“He’s a hard working kid,” Mauk said. “He never misses a workout in our training program. The other thing that sets him apart, besides his work habit, is that he’s great in the classroom. He’s always very respectful. He just epitomizes what you look for in a young man that you want to represent your team. Noah is as good as we’ve ever had.”