June 2, 2011

Kalis clears the air

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Many of the Ohio State recruiting targets took Monday's news of Jim Tressel's resignation hard, especially Kyle Kalis. The 6-foot-5, 300-pound offensive tackle from Lakewood (Ohio) St. Edward is the top ranked commitment in Ohio State's 2012 class and gave his verbal pledge to former coach Jim Tressel early in his junior year. Kalis was clearly stunned to hear the news that Tressel would not be his coach at the next level.

"Well, just like everybody else it was just complete shock and awe," said Kalis of his reaction to the news. "I got a sick feeling in my stomach and I just went back to sleep. I turned my phone off and woke up later to a ton of missed calls. I was so upset that I didn't call anybody back because I didn't want to say anything stupid."

After taking a day to cool off and digest everything, Kalis picked up the phone on Tuesday and called Ohio State interim head coach Luke Fickell. The intent behind the call was certainly not positive news for Ohio State fans but the conversation with Fickell was able to ease Kalis' mind.

"The reason I made the phone call was to de-commit," he said. "Coach Fickell kept talking about how (Ohio State) is still a good program and stuff and how it is like a family and everything. I feel confident that if he ends up being the (permanent) head coach that he's a guy that I would definitely want to play for."

So is Kalis still one-hundred percent committed to Ohio State?

"As of now, yes," he said. "Pretty much the only things that could change that is if coach Fickell is not selected as the next coach of Ohio State or if there is like a four-year ban on bowl games which means I wouldn't get to play in any bowl games in my career there. If it was just a one year ban or a two year ban I would be fine with that as long as coach Fickell is the head coach."

To this point, Kalis had been a ring leader of sorts in terms of helping recruit other players to Ohio State. After speaking with Fickell and re-affirming his commitment, Kalis plans to keep up with that role.

"For like a period of a couple weeks I was kind of confused and questioning my commitment and all of that stuff," he explained. "Now that that's all cleared up I'm right back to (helping recruit)."


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