Nathaniel Marshall, Wolverine

Nathaniel Marshall, Wolverine

April 22, 2024
Oak Park (MI) Fenwick defensive tackle Nate Marshall

Oak Park (MI) Fenwick defensive lineman Nathaniel Marshall committed to Michigan on Monday morning. He picked the Wolverines over offers from Alabama, Illinois, Iowa, Ohio State, and USC, among others.

Marshall is listed at 6’4″ and 265 lbs.

4-star, 83 grade, #4 DT, #78 overall
4-star, 93 grade, #6 DL, #71 overall
4-star, #1 SDE, #21 overall
247 Sports:
4-star, #11 DL, #73 overall

Hit the jump for more.

Marshall was offered one year to the day prior to committing; he was offered on April 21, 2023, and he committed to the staff on April 21, 2024. The news became public today, April 22, but that was just to get things ready to let the world know. Marshall has visited Ann Arbor several times and was in town for the spring game on Saturday.

There’s a lot to like about Marshall, as one would expect from a consensus top-100 player. Despite being so big, he has played Wildcat QB and wide receiver for his high school team. I pity the poor cornerbacks who line up across from such a giant high school specimen. Marshall has a basketball background (his grandfather played for Illinois) and he can high point the ball. None of that specifically translates to playing defensive tackle, but someone who can line up at receiver and quarterback almost certainly has the athleticism to play on the interior defensive line, if not defensive end.

When Marshall lines up on the defensive line, he usually ends up on the interior. He shows some nice quickness with his first step and has an effective swim move. He possesses good closing speed to corral quarterbacks in the backfield, and the aggression is there to toss ball carriers around. Some defensive linemen hop on and just drag players to the ground with their weight; Marshall uses his length, torque, size, and explosiveness to make it a violent takedown instead of a passive subduction.

There are some questions about where Marshall fits on the defensive line. Is he a 3-tech defensive tackle or a 5-tech defensive end? Could he even be a stand-up defensive end like Mike Morris? I also see some times on the defensive line where he comes out of his stance too high and doesn’t gain enough ground with his first step. All the athletic ability is there, but it’s not entirely consistent. I imagine that will get clarified when he’s just a one-way player at the next level.

Overall, Marshall is deserving of his top-100 status. I think the Rivals ranking (#21 overall) might be a little high just because strongside defensive end types are not as highly valued as other positions, but I think a ranking somewhere between #50 to #70 would be fitting. Marshall has the size and athleticism to play right away at the college level, even if it’s just as a rotation piece for the first year or so; he could be a guy who starts off outside and eventually gains the bulk to move to 3-tech.

Michigan now has four commitments in the class of 2025. Marshall joins Bobby Kanka as the defensive linemen committed so far. Marshall would be the first player from Fenwick to play for Michigan since offensive lineman John Powers in the late 1970s and early 1980s.

TTB Rating: 82

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