It just took several months for Adam Bellamy to realize that fact. The native of Aurora, Ohio, entered the recruiting process months ago with a goal of earning a scholarship offer from Ohio State and joining the Buckeyes for their class of 2009.
But even as recent as Sunday, June 8, Bellamy had no idea if that goal would ever be realized.
"I didn't really get that vibe from any of the coaches that I talked to from Ohio State," he told BuckeyeSports.com. "They really just said, ‘We'd like to see you in person and see you work out and stuff, so why don't you just come to our camp?' I would've gone anyways, but nobody really gave me a good idea or anything. They were just taking it in and told me I did a great job. I know they're not allowed to offer you on the spot at the camp, but they didn't really give me any idea.
"I busted my butt on Sunday. I'm glad it worked out."
However, Bellamy made the two-plus-hour drive home following the camp without any real idea what was set to transpire during the coming 48 hours. By now, the details are well-publicized: he received his desired OSU offer one day after the camp and waited about 24 hours before accepting and becoming a Buckeye.
By landing Bellamy, OSU kept him from being snatched up by the likes of Michigan, Michigan State and others who were recruiting him and had extended scholarship offers. Other schools such as Boston College and Notre Dame were beginning to show interest as well, with the Fighting Irish going as far as trying on Tuesday to get him to come to South Bend for an unofficial visit.
"They said congrats about the offer and that their position was just like Ohio State and they wanted to see me in camp and stuff," Bellamy said. "I told them, ‘I'm not going to lie: Ohio State's been my first choice throughout this whole thing and it finally happened for me and I think the recruiting process for me is almost over.' That was that."
With his commitment, Bellamy gives the Buckeyes a player with potential on both sides of the ball. Although Scout.com lists him as the No. 23 offensive guard in the country, Bellamy is being targeted to play as a defensive tackle at OSU. As a junior, he played both ways and finished with 48 tackles and six sacks on defense.
The Buckeyes have commitments from two other defensive linemen for their class of 2009, and Bellamy said he has been in touch with one of them – one of the factors that led him to commit to OSU, he said.
"(Monday) Johnny Simon was texting me," he said, referring to the five-star defensive tackle from Youngstown (Ohio) Cardinal Mooney. "From day one of this whole recruiting process and even before then I knew who he was and I thought he was a beast. (Monday) he was texting me saying, ‘Congratulations, I'm pumped we're going to be teammates, we're bros now' and stuff like that. It made me feel real good. It was pretty cool."
That personal touch, combined with the allure of playing for the state's biggest team, was enough to help the 6-4, 275-pound Bellamy make a final decision.
"Mainly because they're Ohio State," he said when asked why he picked OSU. "They're pretty much the big dogs of college football. But also I've been on a couple visits and I've seen (head) coach (Jim) Tressel and a lot of his coaching staff and I've gotten to compare them to other coaches and I really like just from the little bit I've experienced the vibe they gave off. That really attracted me.
"Since I live in Ohio, I've been around and been a part of the Ohio State fan club and everything. Coming into this thing, I'm pretty sure Ohio State's been my No. 1 pick. Six months ago I never even thought that I would have been anywhere close to an Ohio State offer. It's just been crazy how everything has unfolded."
With his final decision out of the way, Bellamy said he is excited to go back to being a regular 17-year-old kid this summer who can get back to simply focusing on his senior season.
Once his head stops spinning, that is.
"I haven't really gotten hit with it yet," Bellamy said. "I'm just going with the flow. It's crazy. I never thought this would happen. It's surreal."