It has been quite the spring for Deron Irving-Bey. Heading into the month of March the Flint (Mich.) Southwestern standout didn’t have a single Power Five offer, but that didn’t dampen the excitement he felt over the growing number of scholarships coming from mid-majors. Then toward the end of the month that excitement turned to elation when Michigan State offered. He was still riding the emotional high from that news this week when another huge offer was extended.
This time from the University of Michigan.
"My coach said he got a call from Michigan (Thursday),” Irving-Bey said. “It was real good, he told me all about it. Spring ball is over so they (were) going to come visit people and schools and talk to my coach."
“The O-line coach (Tim Drevno) came. My coach called me out of class when Michigan left. That’s when he told me to make the phone call. Then (Drevno) offered me. It was really exciting.”
A few days later the news is still sinking in.
“When (Drevno) first told me (about the offer) I was really excited because it was kind of out of nowhere,” said Irving-Bey. “I didn’t expect it. When I went back to class I sat there silent. Tears of joy just came out of nowhere. I never saw myself in this situation right here getting offers. This is a true blessing.”
Now that he has picked up offers from the in-state rivals the obvious question is does he like currently like one better than the other.
"No, I like both of them,” Irving-Bey replied laughingly. “My mom, she's a diehard Michigan fan and my dad, he's a state fan."
“I haven’t really thought out the rankings on my list yet.”
And when he shared with his parents the news of his Michigan offer after school Friday?
“They were pretty excited,” said Irving-Bey. “My mom like I told you is a diehard Michigan fan. She was ecstatic. She was overly excited.”
“He was happy for me too. He was pretty excited.”
Among his top priorities now is making his way to Ann Arbor so he can get more comfortable with Michigan’s program. That’s something he has already achieved with Michigan State thanks to visits to East Lansing.
"I really like them,” Irving-Bey said of the Green & White. “When I went there they made me feel like I was home. I like the environment and atmosphere they gave off and how they showed me that they wanted me to be there. That's what I want to feel like… like the football program wants me to be there. I don’t have to be a big shot or anything like that, but show me that you want me."
Familial obligations prevented the talented youngster from making it back to East Lansing for the Spartans spring game yesterday, but he has already begun thinking about when he might be able to hit the visit trail again.
Said Irving-Bey, “I plan on going back to Michigan State. I’m not sure when really. I have a really busy schedule with other sports and with my job, so I have to find time.”
“(Michigan) talked to me about coming to their camp. I think I’ll do that.”
That doesn’t mean those are the only schools he will visit. As new offers come through he hopes to figure out ways to get to those campuses also. Syracuse, Indiana, Ohio State, and Notre Dame are all schools Irving-Bey reports growing interest from. He put to bed rumors that a decision in the next few days or weeks is imminent.
"I was thinking before the season starts," he said regarding his decision timeline.
"(It will come down to) if they have the major I want. The pathway I'm trying to major in is nursing, or I could be a trainer. Another thing is just making sure I feel at home and I can live here the next four or five years of my life after high school."