Sometimes the best laid plans are derailed by unexpected events. Kevin Sousa's plan to remain uncommitted was dealt a serious blow when he traveled with his high school coach Anthony Paradiso to Michigan today. So wowed were they by what they saw that Scout.com's #31 quarterback decided to end his recruitment and become a Wolverine.
"The facilities are really nice," said an excited Sousa. "They talked about the stadium (seating) 120,000 in a couple of years. They are doing a lot of renovations. Everything is looking good right now. Then just hanging out with the coaches… Coach Rod Smith and Coach Rodriguez, everybody there was friendly… even the (graduate assistants). Everybody was onboard. I enjoyed being there. It felt like home basically."
"I looked at it and said, ‘it's Michigan, you can't hold back,'" Sousa continued. "I asked Coach (Paradiso), ‘do you believe it is the best fit for me to a Wolverine?' He said, ‘I sure do, 100%'. I was like, ‘Coach (Rodriguez) you've got a new Wolverine family member onboard.' Everybody was excited. I was excited. We were all just jumping up and starting hugging each other. I felt good. Just being there was a great thing for me. I enjoyed it a lot. I believe it was a great decision on my part and Coach Paradiso's part. He has been a major help through all this too. I thank him for everything that he has done. He's been on trips with me everywhere. I'm thankful for my parents, paying off all these trips and doing everything they can for me to be successful as a student and as a quarterback on the football field."
That coach player relationship was a key throughout Sousa's recruitment, and the potential for similar relationships in college was something he longed for. With Rodriguez and Michigan quarterbacks coach Rod Smith, Sousa saw that potential.
"With Coach Smith, it was just the way he carried himself and the type of person he is," Sousa explained. "All the stuff that he tells me about the players. He's a real straight up guy. I like that a lot. And Coach Rodriguez, he's a great man. I do not know what people are saying about him, but when I sat down with him talked to him, I knew he's a great person. He showed a lot of his personality out there when I was speaking with him."
Now that he has pledged verbally to the Maize & Blue, Sousa insists that that officially spells the end of his recruitment. He's a Wolverine. Period.
"Michigan is all about developing players because they have a young roster right now," Sousa stated. "I'm just looking to see what's going to happen. They told me that my first year, 2011, first night game is going to be on prime time against Notre Dame. That got my hyped up a little bit. So that's it (as far as visiting schools goes). We're probably going to take an official visit back up here again to watch a couple of games. I'm not sure when we're going to do that. I have to check the schedule and determine it off of that."
"I'm going to try to get as many people to the family now," he added. "I'm a Wolverine now."