Michigan State (MSU) extended an offer to Hayden Rucci, a tight end from Lititz, Pennsylvania, on a visit in early February. His offer marked the first offer to a tight end in the recruiting class of 2019 handed out by MSU. Hayden measures at 6’4” and 215 pounds and is set to be one of the top priorities for the Spartans in the class of 2019.
On the weekend of February 11th, Hayden and his family made the near 600 mile trip to East Lansing to take an unofficial visit. They took in the Spartans’ win over the Iowa and met the coaches and toured the campus and facilities. Although the recruiting event was a “junior day”, the sophomore may have had the best time of all recruits there. He explained the shocking news of his offer. “It was Coach Bollman that told me about the offer. We were about to meet up with the other recruits at the junior day and he pulled me and my family into his office.
“The first words said were we'd like to offer you a scholarship to play football here. I didn't comprehend those words at first, as it has been my dream to play college football,and especially to hear it from a D1 coach. I then realized the dream is real and it was such an awesome experience.”
Receiving your first offer is always an unbeatable feeing. But in Hayden’s case, when the first offer comes from a program that is recognized for its ability to identify the nation’s top recruits before any others, it means that much more. “I’m very honored to have the chance to be part of such an amazing program and its awesome,” Hayden spoke of his scholarship, “I didn’t except the offer whatsoever so it definitely made the trip even more worth it.”
Hayden became the first tight end to be offered by the Spartans in the class of 2019. Commenting on his reaction to achieving that honor, he said, “ It’s the best feeling ever honestly. I’m very honored that they chose to offer me this early and especially first for the tight ends.”
As his offer from MSU will be the the first of many to come, Hayden will always hold the Spartans in a special place for being the first school to take a chance on him. “They definitely made a good impression on me. I loved Coach Bollman, Staten, and all the other staff and coaches I met.” He truly fell in love with the Spartans’ program and the university in general. “They’re a great group of people that were very welcoming and I really enjoyed the family aspect MSU has. Its a crazy feeling,” Hayden described.
As Hayden is only a sophomore in high school, he has almost two years until the day he signs a letter of intent. However, he is getting a head start on the process, visiting the Spartans first, then looking at other schools. Speaking of his upcoming plans for visits, Hayden said, “I currently plan on visiting Duke, UNC, Pittsburg, Penn State, Syracuse, and Boston College all next month. It’s hard to gauge interest with limitations of communication with coaches.” Hayden obviously has a busy schedule lined up, but he is taking his recruitment with exultation, as he exclaimed, “I’m very excited to see what the future holds!”
Scout has yet to rate Hayden Rucci. One of the traits that stands out about Hayden, isn't even a trait from that derives from the football field. It is extremely difficult not to observe how humble and polite the offered recruit handles himself. The Michigan State Spartans always recruit players who they feel will contribute to the University beyond the football field, and Hayden is no outlier. Spartan Nation will stay in touch with the 2019 tight end as he makes visits all across the country and even back to East Lansing eventually.