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College Recruiting Rollercoaster

December 2, 2011

Some of you may know and some of you may not but I recently committed to The Ohio State University on a baseball scholarship.  Looking at the end result of this process may look like it was all glamor and smiles.  But actually, things were bleak at times and I sometimes even started to doubt who I was as a person and especially as a baseball player.  Looking back on the whole process knowing what the end outcome would be, I realized how foolish I was.  I started to doubt God and the role he played in the whole process.

Now let me go back to a time where dreams were set high and I thought I could conquer the baseball world.  I was just entering my junior year and I was asked to come on a visit to Stetson University in Orlando, Florida.  I went down and when I did they offered me a scholarship pretty close to a full ride.  I was ecstatic and immediately gave glory to God (which is easy to do when things are go well).  Just when I thought things couldn’t get better, Virginia Tech started to show some major interest and even came to see two of my high school games; one of the coaches being the head coach.  I went and took a visit there and fell in love! I would walk around campus saying things like “when I come here” and “after I go here” instead of praying about my decision and thinking about where God wants me to go.  But why should I care about things like that? Things were going great! I was doing this all by myself…  This is when things took a turn for the worse.  VT called and said they were no longer going to recruit me and that they were going to move on.  I can not explain how hurt I was.  All I thought I was going to have was being flushed away like the goldfish you really loved.  And once again, like I do so many times, when things got bad I turned to God.  I prayed telling him that I was turning the whole process over to God and putting it in his hands.  My dad said it best when he told me that I could not trust God with some things and not with others.

It wasn’t a week later and I started to get phone calls from Arizona State.  For those of you who do not follow college baseball, ASU is a top 5 program year in and year out.  I had conversations with the coach quite often and my dad even spoke to the athletic director on numerous occasions.  Instead of doing the same thing I had done with VT and tried a prayerless and not trusting approach to my decision, I remembered that I was going to trust God with the whole process.  To make a long story short, the same thing happened with ASU that had happened with VT.  They said they wanted to see me again and were unable to because I was in the State Tournament with my Legion team.  Who knows; if I chose to attend the tournament in Indiana where ASU was going to see me again, maybe I would have gotten am offer to the school.  But after prayer, I chose to stay with my team in the tournament, ultimately losing any chance to have ASU see me again and offer a scholarship.

After ASU backed out, it would have been easy to have the same emotions I had with the VT situation.  But instead, I had turned it over to God knowing he had a plan for me like he promises in Jeremiah 29:11 (11 For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future).  And to top it off, Stetson had pulled their scholarship in the same week so now I had nothing.  I needed to trust God more than ever.  I knew he had a plan and I was anxious to watch it play out.

With summer baseball coming to an end I was looking forward to the exposure I would get with the Allegheny Pirates.  After the first weekend both Georgetown and Temple university showed strong interest.  I visited both schools and got scholarships but I did not feel comfortable making my decision quite yet.  I wanted to see what the rest of the fall season had to offer.  So going into the last weekend not really sold on either Georgetown or Temple, we made the trip out to Ohio State for our last tournament.  I had no idea what God had planned for me in the next week.

I thought I played real well at OSU and apparently they thought so also.  I received a phone call from the head coach, Coach Beals, early that next week and went on a visit that Wednesday.  I loved it there and they offered me a scholarship that week and I made my commitment soon after that.  I could not have been any happier!

It was amazing how throughout the whole process I had no idea where I was going to end up.  If I learned anything, it was that I need to trust God in everything I ever have to face.  God knew where I  was going to end up going to school before I even went to kindergarten!  I was taught that turning everything over to God makes the stress of situations go away because of my rooted faith in God!  I have to thank him for teaching me this lesson in high school so I will be ready for any challenge I will have in my life.

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