Recruiting is a nauseating roller-coaster that at times is 'edge of your seat' tantalizing and at time can be absolutely agonizing . That has been my feeling following the recent recruiting wars between Michigan and Ohio State. You win some, you lose some.
Michigan may have just tilted the balance in landing the best recruit out of Ohio, Kyle Kalis. This verbal commitment to Michigan seems to be the latest blow to Ohio State.
However, it's just one player who would prefer to play for a stable program, if you can call Michigan stable. I guess it's more stable then Ohio State, but I digress.
I get that, don't commit to a school until you're a 100 percent sure on your commitment. He was, but his case was different. He didn't like the instability so he left and will take some of his friends with him.
Live with it, Ohio State. It happens to the best of the best. I don't feel bad for you. See Justin Boren.
With a handful of Ohio recruits still looking at Michigan, some also with interest to Ohio State, it could be back to the days of yesteryear when they fought consistently for recruits.
In an interview with Joe Schad at the mothership, Kalis said the border is open for business and that he would be talking fellow Ohio recruits into coming over to Michigan. We'll see how that goes.
I worry, with all that Ohio State is going through, that some enraged Ohio State fan will take it too far or one enraged Alabama fan will kill a bunch of trees. (Oh wait, that already happened!) What's next? That's my biggest concern.
Living in the Mitten and growing up a Michigan fan, I usually found myself rooting for whoever they put on the field; Tripp Welbourne, Ricky Powers, Mark Messner, Desmond Howard, just to name a few.
I didn't care where they were from or where they grew up, I only cared that they played for Michigan, so I will root for them and continue to do so as they continue their careers.
For the past five years, I have found myself reading about recruits, following pay sites information about recruits, all in a selfish, glorified way. I pound my chest at a Top 10 class. I fed into the holes that would chastise those that went somewhere else. I was being selfish.
It's not about us, the fan, when it comes to recruiting. Do fans want the best possible team to be fielded by their school or university? Of course.
But it's about the kids' four years of school. Where does he feel most comfortable and who are we to take comments from a 17-year-old and mock or question them? It makes no sense to me.
I'm a lifelong Michigan fan, one who can be overly sensitive to Michigan haters. I couldn't take it at times, I would get so angry. You know what happened, I got a life.
If Michigan loses out on a recruit, yes I'm upset, especially if they go to that school in Ohio or that one 45 minutes up the road from Ann Arbor, but that's life. You can't fester over it. You have no control over it. It's not your call.
I've been reading over some 'Kyle Kalis' commentary on forums and boards across a few different platforms and found it appalling what some people are saying about the kid.
Ohio State fans will say, well Michigan fan did the same when Terrelle Pryor and Justin Boren turned them down. Again, Michigan didn't have a good enough tattoo parlor for Pryor and Boren just saw his coaches let go.
Okay, just kidding with that one, but seriously, no hard feelings.
I found this clip on ESPN Cleveland Radio's X's and O's radio show talking about Kyle Kalis' stepfather, radio hosts unsure if it was truly him, calling in to say Brady Hoke and Co. have manipulated him into committing to Michigan. Take a listen for yourself and you can be the judge and jury.
What I find so weird is that this vitriol is coming from grown ups. People far removed from college.
I can see a college student ribbing another college student, that's what they do in college, but for a grown man or woman to engage in this type of verbal vitriol, it's just infantile. It doesn't matter what side of the border you're on, it's garbage.
I was perusing another pay site when I read through 36 pages of nastiness towards Kalis. I guess this is what college football has become; a bunch of grown men ripping young kids for making the very same choices they had the freedom to make without a whisper of 'hope you break a leg' in their ear.
Here is a quote from BuckeyeSports.com from a poster who calls himself 'idontbuygasinmichigan':
idontbuygasinmichigan wrote: I hope this kid gets a career ending injury the first time he steps foot on the field in that sh*t hole up north. Rot in hell Kalis. You deserve it.
Now if that's what you call fair game, I want out of this game. Just one example of how vile fans can be. Can't people just say, 'darn it that sucks' and move on?
I may run my mouth with my friends about it, but to go on radio, or hide behind a keyboard to let the world know you hope he tears his ACL this season, that's just wrong. Similar to the tree incident in the Auburn/Alabama rivalry, that kind of stuff is unwarranted.
From this Michigan fan to all Ohio State fans and fans of teams in general, can you please stop the vitriol? This kid has a senior season to play, he has a team he hopefully can guide to a state title, we don't need another Auburn/Alabama story to play out or even another Nancy Kerrigan incident to happen.
I can see that playing out in this day and age of insane fandom, it scares me that we've put these kids in that predicament.