Recruiting Update: Raritan Linemen Shane Mertz and Christian Marchena

Posted by Scott Stump ā€“ http://twitter.com/Scott_Stump

E-mail: stump@allshoremedia.com

Raritan junior offensive lineman Shane Mertz (Class of 2011) is now up to 11 Division I-A offers, according to Rockets coach Bob Generelli. East Carolina, Illinois, Louisville, Northwestern, Boston College, Buffalo, Duke, Rutgers, Tulane, Central Florida, and Maryland have all offered Mertz, and Generelli said two more offers should be forthcoming this week for the 6-foot-7, 280-pound junior.

Raritan had not had a Division I-A recruit since tight end/linebacker Matt Semenza went to East Carolina back in 1994 before current senior wide receiver Bennett Jackson committed to Notre Dame last spring, and now the Rockets could have two and potentially three in two years between Mertz and another junior offensive lineman, Christian Marchena.

Marchena was offered by Delaware yesterday, according to Generelli, to add to Division I-AA offers from Lafayette, Albany, Bucknell, and Stony Brook. When Colonial Athletic Association schools like Delaware comes calling, that usually signals that a prospect is a borderline Division I-A player, and Marchena is 6-foot-2 and 270 pounds, so he has the size potential to play at that level. Marchena also looks to be fully healthy, as last season he was coming back from a knee injury that wiped out his entire sophomore season.

It also helps that Generelli, one of the Shore’s top coaches, specializes in coaching offensive linemen. Generelli was an All-Shore offensive guard at Middletown North under legendary coach Vic Kubu in the early 1980s and went on to play at Montclair State. He also has coached in the college ranks at North Carolina and Monmouth University, so Mertz and Marchena are being trained by one of the best around.

The other good thing about Mertz and Marchena are that they are excellent students. Both are in the top 10-15 range academically in their class, continuing another positive trend, as Jackson is also a good student.

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