In an era of, “Show me the money,” one of the newest Spartans OL Connor Kruse chose to follow his heart. He spurned other full ride scholarship opportunities to become a preferred walk on yesterday with the MSU Spartans.
“Coach Dantonio was really excited when we talked, he is a great coach and it came down to I love the Spartans and that is where I wanted to be,” was how Connor talked about his choice last night with me at his home.
For his parents Sue and Erick, in these economic times, they couldn’t be prouder of their son’s choice to spurn the money to follow his heart. “We will encourage Connor in anything he does. We weren’t football people until he started playing, but I LOVE football,” was how his mother Sue talked about his choice. “For us it was simple, we wanted our son to follow his dreams. Not many people get that opportunity,” those sentiments were shared to me by his father.
Kruse is a big 6’4 ½” 290# offensive lineman. He will start out working on the inside as a guard for the Spartans. He will be coached by one of the countries best in Dan Roushar. “I really have a great relationship with him that goes back to me being a sophomore. I just liked everything about him and I am really excited to play for him,” was how Connor described his new position coach.
In a day and age where stand out players wait to the last second to hold press conferences and the game becomes about a lot more than the actual game Kruse is both refreshing and impressive. His play on the field garners attention far and wide as a dominant player and he is expected to earn that scholarship.
“They want me to get it and I want to get it, I just have to work hard to get it.” Kruse took some comfort in the fact that this staff has a track record of rewarding walk on players that produce. He referenced Blair White as a glowing example of that along with the newest walk on that has been rewarded with a scholarship in D.J. Young, a fellow offensive lineman. “They reward guys that work hard and that is what I have always done. I am really excited.”
This youngster from Lowell will be a great addition to the Spartan Nation and NO ONE should be shocked when he finally sees the field for the Spartans. Great players have come to MSU with the look and size of division one players, but were missing the most important muscle: HEART. Not Kruse. He is all heart to go along with the impressive size and strength.
As his opponents learned this year watching Lowell players run by as he put them on the ground, NEVER underestimate Connor. Those who have have been made to look foolish.