Marque Hall weighed 330 pounds as a junior but elected to lose 60 pounds to make himself more viable in pursuit and better conditioned to maintain late-game dominance. In the process, he turned himself into the most sought after football prospect in the Tar Heel State and the nation's No. 10 rated defensive tackle according to The Insiders. During practices for the Shrine Bowl (the North Carolina-South Carolina all-star game) he was said to be virtually "unblockable."
"The hardest part, at least the most stressful part, of recruiting is trying to stay happy during all these calls," he said a week ago. "I get calls from coaches and internet services almost every night. I also get visits from all the different coaching staffs. Coach Amato (N.C. State) was here today. Coach Brooks and the UNC coaches have visited me in the past week."
Hall visited both North Carolina and North Carolina State last weekend and was on South Carolina's campus the week before. He arrives in Knoxville tonight and will wrap up his five official visits next week at Virginia Tech. He has refused to name a leader and won't until he finishes his visits, although the Wolf Pack is believed by many to be his silent leader.
"I'm really waiting to take all my visits before I start narrowing things down," he said. "How I get along with the other players is important to me. I heard that Trimane Goddard has committed to UNC but we weren't that close at the Shrine Bowl so I don't think that will influence me much."
Hall is being recruited by UT's Dan Brooks who took in the second round Class-2A playoff game when Forrest Hills shutout Pisgah 21-0. In the that game, Hall had four sacks, two tackles behind the line of scrimmage and two passes batted down.
On the season, Hall finished with 71 tackles, 16 sacks and 34 tackles behind the line of scrimmage. But his most impressive achievements were recovering six fumbles and blocking an amazing eight field goals.
Wherever Marque Hall signs, he's sure to make kickers' lives unbearable and will make the extra point an exciting event.