Photo by Ed Beyer PhD
LANCASTER - If you're 6'2", weigh 260 pounds and have the last name of Rush, more than likely you're going to play football.
At least defense.
And for one season in a Marauder football uniform, Turan Rush gave quarterbacks fits as he wreaked havoc in the backfield. Eastern Michigan University noticed Rush's talents and recently offered him a full football scholarship during the recent signing period.
"It feels great. I went to Cali unexpected, not knowing anything about it, but I feel really blessed right now," Rush said. "When I took a visit, I loved it. It was beautiful; cold, snowy weather. The coaches are so greta here. They want us to be better people outside of football. It's a great program."
In Rush's only season at defensive end, the West Virginia native, finished with 36 tackles, 5 1/2 sacks and one interception. Rush had 3 1/2 sacks in a game against LA Valley. Rush was pivotal on AVC's defensive line in which many teams found it nearly impossible to penetrate.
"A big part of my decision to go to Eastern Michigan was it's only about six hours from home," he said.
Rush knows he will have to compete hard to earn playing time at college football's highest level.
"I'm up to the challenge. I don't want it to come easy," he said.
AVC head coach Perry Jehlicka had nothing but praise for Rush.
"He is a quality football player and I believe he will be a big time impact player," he said. "He's a high motor kid and he's great with his hands. He plays with a passion."
The Eagles were 5-7 last season and finished with a 3-5 record in the Mid-American Conference. Next season Rush will return to Southern California when Eastern Michigan plays San Diego State on Sept. 22.
"I appreciate my time I spent at AVC," Rush said. "Without my coaches and teammates I wouldn't be here."
AVC's Noah Hopper also received a scholarship to play football at NAIA powerhouse, Grand View University.
Last season, the Vikings finished with a 9-3 record and were ranked 11th in the country among NAIA schools.
"He's a tremendous football player and plays the run very well," Jehlicka said of Hopper. "I'm so excited for him. I think it will be a great fit. He is going to have a great career there."
The ball-magnet Hopper, finished his 2017 campaign second on the team with 65 tackles to go along with two sacks. He had a season-high 14 tackles against College of the Desert. Hopper, 6'0", 200 pounds who will play linebacker for Grand View, had two other games with tackles in double figures.