Let's set the record straight: Contrary to any reports you may have read on the Internet, Myron Rolle was never asked about me during his testimony before the Knight Commission. It never happened.
After the session, a Rivals.com reporter asked Rolle about me, about any alleged role I had in his recruiting. Rolle said I ranked him lower--ESPN had ranked him as the No. 1 player in the nation--because he wouldn't announce his college decision (to Florida State) during the U.S. Army All-American Game and opted not to attend such academic schools as Notre Dame or Stanford.
I never called Rolle. He called me as a sophomore, junior and senior to talk about my ratings. He also talked about academic schools. So when he told me he was leaning to Florida State, I reminded him that he had talked about academic schools. Florida State isn't known as an academic school.
He got mad. All along, he had been telling me how Yale and Stanford and Michigan and Notre Dame wanted him so much. I wasn't pushing any school, just reminding him of how much he had been emphasizing the importance of academics and a good college education. Notre Dame wasn't even in his top five.
I said he was a first-round draft choice in the NFL and I ranked him in the top 30. But he thought he should be No. 1 in the nation. ESPN had rated him No. 1, the only recruiting service to do so, so he made his commitment on ESPN. My choice as the No. 1 player in the nation was Chris "Beanie" Wells, who went to Ohio State.
Prior to his senior year, I rated Rolle in the top five with Wells, Percy Harvin and Andre Smith. But I dropped him at the U.S. Army Combine in January after seeing Harvin and other top wide receivers twist him around like a pretzel. Coaches said he was a good hitter and was physical but he lacked cover skills. They thought he might be better suited to be a linebacker.
That's when Rolle started to get mad and stopped talking to me. Kids with big egos get upset when you lower their rating. When kids ask me, I tell them to go to a school that graduates kids with worthwhile degrees.
Of course, few kids listen to that message. They want great facilities, girls and the quickest way to the NFL. But I'll give Rolle a lot of credit. In the end, he chose academics and became a Rhodes Scholar, which made his decision to attend Florida State all the more strange. But Florida State, to its credit, said they would help him to earn a Rhodes Scholarship because he stood out so much, more than if he can gone to Harvard or Stanford.