(EAST LANSING, MI) -- MSU's coaching staff knew it would be a long shot to snare Louisville Male's Michael Bush, one of the nations top high school quarterbacks. Still with new coach John L. Smith's ties to the area and his active recruitment of Bush while at Louisville, they figured they had at least a shot.
Now, their hopes of landing the Kentucky star are being tested to the limit. Bush, on Wednesday visited Ohio State University and the Buckeyes trotted out everything -- including the Sears National Championship trophy -- in an attempt to coax the two-sport star to verbal, but Bush didn't flinch. He left without committing to the Buckeyes.
"'It was exciting,'' Bush told the Courier-Journal of Louisville, KY. ''I got to spend some time with (former Male star) Marcus (Green), and he showed me around." But Bush noticed something else, the presence of Utica, MI senior quarterback Craig Krenzel and three other contenders. "They have four quarterbacks now. I'm still the same [regarding his leaders]. I'll just wait to make the rest of my visits.''
But MSU fans shouldn't get too confident. Today, Bush goes from the 'frying pan to the fire.' When he visits Tennessee he'll meet a desperate coach Phil Fulmer who views Bush as his last chance to land a top quarterback to pilot the Volunteer machine. Tennessee finds itself in the unfamiliar position of being snubbed by four of the top high school quarterbacks in the country. MSU hopes it's five-for five.
Already the Volunteers have been turned down by Chris Leak (Florida), Blake Mitchell (South Carolina but will still take a visit to UT) JaMarcus Russell (still deciding) and Richard Kovalcheck (Arizona). With Casey Clausen heading to his senior season, the Vols have to land someone.
Negative recruiting has hurt Tennessee as have the comments of Chris Leak, who very publicly dropped the Vols from his top five. Leak cited the treatment of his older brother C.J., a transfer from Wake Forest. Chris insinuated that the Volunteer staff had lied and reneged on promises to C.J. That is reportedly a factor in the Volunteers inability to land a QB. Leak has even tried to get Jayson Swain of Huntsville, AL, Tennessee's top recruit thus far, to de-commit and come with him to Florida.
It's against that backdrop that has Bush in Tennessee today. He is scheduled to visit East Lansing in two weeks on Jan 31st when MSU is planning an all-out blitz of the best recruits they can bring in. MSU is known to have Jameel McClain of Philadelphia and Andre Callender of West Orange Seton Hall Prep scheduled in that date as well.