“My mother cried with excitement when she heard about the commitment and the scholarship,” Maranges said.
Three weeks after Maria struck, with his high school still lacking electricity, Maranges elected to move with his father, Federico Sr,, to Miami, leaving his mother Camille, who worked with the Puerto Rican government, behind to aid with the island’s recovery.
Puerto Rican high schools don’t offer football as a team sport, so his lone experience prior to joining the Columbus team has been as a club sport athlete.
Knowing of only one other Puerto Rican who made the transition from the island to scholarship football, Maranges realized moving with his dad to Miami offered the best chance to attract the attention of college coaches.
“Since I was a little kid I wanted to play football, really,” Maranges said.
The high school football season was already well underway when Maranges joined Columbus, but he did see limited playing time at the end of the final three games of the 2017 season.
“Just so that the coaches could see if I could play,” Maranges said.
The 6-foot-4, 285-pound guard who is as intelligent as he is big – 5.2 GPA in the fall semester, SAT score above 1,300 – became a starter as a senior but, lacking the exposure that accompanies players who grow up playing Miami-Dade football and having only attended one football camp – and that was at Princeton – college recruiters didn’t exactly come running with scholarship offers.
Long Island University and Bryant previously offered Maranges, who made his official visit to FAU this past weekend.
“I like the combination of everything,” Maranges said. “I just love the school ambiance in total. I just like the people. I like the facilities. I like the coaching staff.”
With Camille – now reunited with her husband and son in Miami – and Federico Sr. accompanying him on his visit, Maranges committed on Sunday to play football for Lane Kiffin and FAU.
“I was lucky enough to enter the program at Christopher Columbus High School. They trained me to be the person I am today,” Maranges said. “The sky’s the limit.”
Maranges is the second offensive lineman to commit to FAU’s 2019 recruiting class. Lavante Epson signed with the Owls last week and is already enrolled at FAU.