With that in mind, I decided to talk to Rolle about those elements of his life that have shaped him as a person, a student and a football player. Why is he so focused? How does he cope with the pressure of being a standout football recruit and a budding scholar who aspires to become a doctor?
We hope you enjoy our Q&A session with Scout.com's top-ranked prospect, because I sure took great pleasure in conducting it.
Bob Lichtenfels: You have stressed that academics are very important to you. Besides the obvious reasons, why is that?
Myron Rolle: My family has stressed it to me from the start. It's been a constant for me since elementary school. There's no reason why it should stop after I go to college.
Lichtenfels: You can't tell me that you don't think about leaving college early and playing in the [NFL]. That has to cross any high-profile kid's mind. So why would academics matter so much?
Rolle: That's a great question. Most coaches say I will have that opportunity. We have devised a three-year plan so I can try to graduate. I hope to enter the league with my degree. In school I take so many advanced classes that I should have 23-24 college credits when I begin my freshmen year, so technically I'll be close to being a sophomore.
Lichtenfels: You were actually held back one year. Has that helped or hindered you academically and athletically?
Rolle: I saw Brian Toal do it so I thought it would be a good idea. This definitely did not hinder me at all. I used that year to accelerate my course load so I could be taking advanced-placement courses and honors courses early enough to get several credits. Athletically, I got stronger, bigger and faster, and socially, I matured as well.
Lichtenfels: What is your intended major in college?
Rolle: I'm planning on microbiology. My passion in neurology, most schools don't have it.
Lichtenfels: You also plan on going to medical school and becoming a doctor, correct?
Rolle: Medical school is a goal of mine. I feel being a doctor is not about money or titles, it's about helping and being charitable. God has blessed me and now I can give back. I can be a mentor to young black kids that don't have role models.
Lichtenfels: So even if you do go to the NFL, you still plan on becoming a doctor?
Rolle: Yes, regardless of how long I play if I do get the opportunity. I still plan on becoming a doctor.
Lichtenfels: The Hun School: What can you tell us about it and how it has helped you?
Rolle: It's a boarding school with about 500 kids. It's an outstanding school. The academic course load is ridiculous, but it's one of the best schools in the Northeast. It is the perfect academic setting in Princeton, N.J.
Lichtenfels: Is it safe to assume you were in advanced or gifted classes in elementary school as well?
Rolle: Yes, I took advanced classes. I even went to school on Saturdays before games. All the kids would be on the playground and I would be in class.
Lichtenfels: Does school ever get boring for you, or do you at times feel unchallenged?
Rolle: Sometimes, you keep getting A's, but if you don't get one you get sent back to reality. I get complacent, but I catch myself and I regain my focus. It's all a learning experience. When I was a freshman it happened to me a few times.
Lichtenfels: You have often discussed the fact that there are steps you take when deciding on a program. You have said there's criteria each school must meet. Can you tell us about that?
Rolle: There's actually like five or six pages of stuff. We as a family will sit around the table and discuss it. Things like the head coach, strength and conditioning coaches and the program, the position coach, the coach that's recruiting me, the amount of Academic All-Americans the school has had, how often are they on TV, what would the travel be like for my family, how is the training regimen, the nutrition program for players, the facilities, the dorms, and the social life on the campus. We then rank them from one to five. It's kind of fun, the whole family gets involved. The school that I select will have everything that I need.
Lichtenfels: You're still a kid. How do you have any time to have a social life? How do you balance life, school, and sports?
Rolle: I try to have fun with my friends. We just went to see Batman the other night. I live by the beach, so I go there once in a while. I don't think I miss out on that much. I try to be as social as I can, but I maintain my focus. I have a goal and a plan and that's where my focus needs to be.
Lichtenfels: Who exactly is Myron Rolle?
Rolle: I think I'm an intelligent, charismatic, God-fearing kid who loves football.
Lichtenfels: Has this whole process changed you at all?
Rolle: No. It just gets a little crazy when coaches can call, you get 12-15 calls a night, the text messages and stuff. I did get a letter from a kid; at least I think it was a kid. He wanted me to sign an Iowa flag. He kept telling me how great I was. So, sometimes it does get a little crazy.
Lichtenfels: Do you tend to get caught up in all the attention at all?
Rolle: My family keeps me in-line. If I walk around the house saying, "I'm Scout.com's No. 1 player in the nation," they'll say, "Cool, Myron, now take out the garbage or wash the dishes."
As calm and reserved as Rolle is off-the-field, he is a terror when he straps on his equipment. Here is video footage of Myron Rolle.
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