The early signing period for spring sports came and went with little fanfare in Columbia County.
There was, however, one big piece of local news - Greenbrier High School star Eric Marshall signed to play basketball at Wofford College in Spartanburg, S.C.
I must admit that this signing caught me off guard.
Marshall, a 6-foot-3 shooting guard with plenty of game, got caught up in an odd recruiting situation.
In my opinion, Marshall has the talent to play in the Southeastern Conference, if he was with the right team.
So I was stunned to hear that he had signed with Wofford.
Don't get me wrong - Wofford is a good program in an excellent conference, but it's still not the SEC.
Basically, Marshall was a "tweener." He was a lesser-known talent that the small colleges would kill for, while the big schools weren't ready to make a scholarship offer.
I think Marshall's senior season at Greenbrier could have elevated his status with the larger colleges, but that would have been a risky gamble. If he waited for the big boys to come calling, and an offer never arrived, there would be no guarantee that the Wofford scholarship would still be available.
Marshall took the safe route, and it's hard to blame him.
Just a few weeks ago, Winthrop University tried to pressure Marshall into a commitment, and when he didn't take the bait, Winthrop signed someone else.
I'm sure Marshall didn't want to get burned again, and he seems to like his final choice.
"Eric and his parents visited and just loved the campus, and it's only an hour and a half away," Greenbrier coach Garrett Black said.
Black believes Wofford has made a real steal by securing Marshall.
"I hate saying this, because he's my player, but he might just be the best basketball player we've ever had in the county," Black said.
I agree with that assessment, and the numbers back it up.
As a junior last season, Marshall poured in nearly 22 points a game, and also grabbed 9.5 rebounds per contest. So far this season, he has helped lead the Pack to a 4-0 start by averaging 26 points and 10 rebounds per game, including a 37-point game against Jefferson County.
Along with the offensive production, Marshall plays great defense; plus, he's a really good kid.
With that kind of package wrapped up before Christmas, coach Mike Young and his Wofford basketball program should thank their lucky stars, because they are getting one heck of a present in Marshall.
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