The frenetic pace of recruiting settled down a bit recently for Caleb Kelly. The Fresno (Calif.) Clovis West star narrowed his long list of offers to seven finalists last month and is now focused on vetting those suitors more thoroughly.
“I want to take all my officials and then after that cut it down to five or three, but most likely five and have five hats on the table and still shooting for signing day.”
Not all of those visits can be officials, and Kelly isn’t yet sure which ones. There is but one exception.
“Oklahoma will be in there for sure,” he said.
That distinction could be indicative of the Sooners have a leg up at this point, but there is still a long way to go in a race that all his other suitors are far from conceding. Michigan certainly isn’t backing off. Despite an inordinate amount of face time during Kelly’s spring visit to Ann Arbor and the coaching staff’s trip to Fresno for a satellite camp, the Wolverine brass is definitely campaigning for an official visit so it can have even more.
“They’re up there too with Oklahoma,” Kelly said of the Maize & Blue. “I’ll most likely take (an official) there. I’m not for sure about it and Michigan is a great school. I love all the coaches. I love the atmosphere over there. It is a good fit for me I felt like. It is just a place that I could see myself going also.”
One of the Wolverines’ primary pitches is he is one of the few SAM backers they’re recruiting in the 2016 class. Maybe the only one.
“They told us that we’re top on their board,” said Kelly. “They hit me all the time and Michigan they really want me. All their fans are always tweeting about me and hitting me up on Twitter. They’re always hitting me and telling me that they want me. The coaches they came over Fresno they told me I was top of the board.”
The Golden State star is likely hearing similar comments from other staffs… making it that much harder to distinguish one from the pack.
“I hope like every other football player I get that one feeling, ‘this is the place for me’,” said Kelly. “I don’t know if I’ve got that yet, but I’d like visit some of these schools again and visit some of these other schools and see for sure if I really, really like the school and hopefully I’ll be praying about it and God leads me and I’m cool to go wherever I feel is right for me.”
That place could be far away from home, but as time has gone on the talented youngster has gotten a better feel for what kind of role distance might play in his ultimate decision.
“It’s going to be hard (if he chooses a school far from home), but I feel everywhere I go is going to be hard,” Kelly said. “It’s just a little bit more money if I’m out of town and I probably will see my family less if I’m not in Cali, but if they’re willing to do it, I’m willing to do it. So we’ll see where it goes. If I stay or if I go, I’m fine with either.”
“The distance, (my mom) is always saying that’s my baby, but she knows that she is going to be tortured every day that I’m not with her. My mom and I, we’re so close. It’ll be hard for her no matter where I go, and she’s fine with either. She doesn’t want to hold me back at all.”