The number of de-commitments among high school football players is reaching epidemic proportions. Seniors from coast to coast, from sea to shining sea, are reneging on their early pledges. Curiously, to my knowledge, there are no reports of any Illinois products changing their minds.
Here is a partial list of some of the big-name players who have de-committed in recent weeks:
* Quarterback Josh Nunes of Upland, Calif., de-committed from Tennessee and opted to make a new commitment to Stanford.
* William Campbell, a 6-4, 310-pound defensive lineman from Detroit, originally committed to Michigan. Now he says he is shopping around. He might still end up at Michigan.
* Pat Patterson, a wide receiver from Macon County, Mississippi, committed to Mississippi State. Now he says he will choose Alabama, LSU or Auburn.
* Shaquelle Evans of Inglewood, Calif., one of the top five wide receivers in the country, has de-committed from USC and now is visiting Notre Dame, UCLA and Oregon.
* Nyshier Oliver, a running back from Jersey City, N.J.,also de-committed from Tennessee and recently opted for Notre Dame.
So what does the future hold for 6-3, 208-pound linebacker Zeke Motta of Vero Beach, Fla., who recently chose Notre Dame over Florida?
In all cases, they made decisions too soon. They are impulsive kids who committed to the first big name school that offered them. They didn't realize other big-time programs would be coming down the pike.
In the last year or two, the recruiting process got a bit crazier when the term "silent verbal" came into being. Supposedly, a prospect gives a "soft verbal" commitment to a college with the understanding that they still are evaluating other programs.
It is a ridiculous term. What kind of integrity are we talking about here? A kid commits but he wants to keep making visits to other schools? That's like getting married but still wanting to keep dating. Makes a lot of sense, right? No wonder the recruiting process has become a circus.