The past few months have been quite a whirlwind of social activity for former Michigan State recruit Jayru Campbell. He went from being a star high school quarterback and committed to one of the Big Ten's top football programs, to a non-committal and a soon-to-be resident of the Wayne County jail.
That's right; on Tuesday, Campbell announced that he was backing out of his plans to play football at Michigan State.
“I would say I have opened up the recruiting process again and decommitted from Michigan State,” Campbell said in an interview with Detroit’s WXYZ-TV (Channel 7). “I’m just trying to enjoy the recruitment process for my last year in high school.”
It's clear that MSU was finally fed up with Campbell and his jail sentence likely sealed his fate with the program. Head football coach Mark Dantonio has become more and more stringent in recent years with legal and team infractions by his players as the team's success has risen.
Campbell attacked a security guard earlier this year at his high school and was charged last month with assault with intent to do great bodily harm, a felony, and aggravated assault, a misdemeanor. The young athlete pleaded guilty to the misdemeanor in a plea deal struck last month, and the felony charge was later dismissed. He will serve 60 days in jail, community service, and probation.
The Cass Tech senior spoke more about the incident during his interview with WXYZ and insisted that he is not what he's perceived to be at the moment, adding that he's been attending a weekly anger management class.
“I’m not a thug,” Campbell said. “I would not consider myself as a criminal. I would consider myself as a natural-born leader and someone that likes to help others.”
Campbell went on to add the usual slew of predetermined quotes throughout the interview designed to showcase his "new, enlightened outlook", ranging from “If I could apologize 100 times, I would” to “Everybody deserves a second chance” to the world-famous “I have learned from this situation.” Unfortunately, no matter what he says at this point, it all sounds like a coaching segment... and not the kind that might have taken place between him and Dantonio.
For now, Campbell's public relations people and his agent will do their best to repair the damaged athlete's stock. But until Campbell can speak honestly and begin to show true remorse for his actions and behavior, he'll likely end up as being just another nobody on a low-rate football field somewhere.
That is, once he gets out of jail...
You can follow MSU writer, Michael Ferro, at twitter.com/MichaelFerro.