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October 19, 2011
Byron Marshall does not know the offensive linemen that will be blocking for him at the U.S. Army All-American Bowl and in a way doesn't seem to care that much because the San Jose (Calif.) Valley Christian running back is so excited just to have this opportunity.
Marshall, a 5-foot-10, 195-pound four-star prospect by Rivals.com, was presented with his Army game jersey during a presentation at his high school on Wednesday and he said he cannot wait to show off his skills in San Antonio.
"It's crazy," Marshall said. "It's a huge honor. They only take the best players out of the whole country so I feel blessed. I'm going to have a good time, I'm definitely going to go down there and compete so it's definitely something I'm looking forward to.
"It's huge. This is the final game before college. This is it. It's the biggest all-star game to play in and I'm really excited to play there.
"It's going to be fun. It's going to be good to go against some of the best linebackers and see what they have. You get to prove yourself. It's going to be a little different because the line has never worked together before but it's whatever. I'm looking forward to it."
Rated sixth at running back and No. 108 in the 2012 class by Rivals.com, Marshall is especially looking forward to the Army Bowl because he's not caught up in recruiting just yet.
His five favorites are Arizona State, Cal, Notre Dame, Oregon and Washington with USC still being considered and Marshall said he does not plan to make his commitment until even after the Army Bowl. That means he might wait until National Signing Day.
For now, recruiting is not a concern and he's not going to let it be bothersome through the next few months and probably not even when he gets to San Antonio.
"There is no favorite yet," said Marshall, who rushed for about 2,800 yards and 30 touchdowns in his sophomore and junior seasons combined.
"I kind of have my top five schools and I'm going from there. Each of them has something different and something good to offer. I'm just trying to take it all in and see which school fits me best.
"I'm not going to (commit) at the Army game. I'll probably do it after the game. I'm not going to rush to make it. I honestly have no idea. I'm not trying to rush anything or try to hold on to make people wait. I just really don't know."
Marshall, whose brother plays at Arizona State, has already visited with the Sun Devils when they defeated USC earlier this season.
He's planning to visit Oregon for its regular-season finale against Oregon State. Trips to Washington and Cal are also being planned but Marshall has not finalized any dates yet. A big trip is coming up this weekend. Notre Dame is hosting some of the nation's top players for its matchup against USC and Marshall will be in attendance. He's definitely looking forward to seeing what the Irish have to offer on game day.
"I'm excited for it," said Marshall, the highest-ranked uncommitted running back by Rivals.com. "It's a big game because they're playing USC. There are going to be a whole lot of other recruits there so it's going to be fun.
"It's going to be cool to talk with the coaches, see the campus and just see the atmosphere around the game and around the team. That's going to be huge."
Marshall isn't in a rush to make a commitment - but he cannot wait to get to the Army game to prove he's one of the nation's best running backs.