The Wolverine

March 2018

The Wolverine: Covering University of Michigan Football and Sports

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 41 of 99

42 THE WOLVERINE MARCH 2018 BY ANDREW VAILLIENCOURT All Ronnie Bell wanted was a chance. The Kansas City (Mo.) Park Hill two-star wide receiver originally signed with Missouri State to play basketball, but knew all along that football was his first love. He had been denied that opportu- nity until Michigan coach Jim Har- baugh came calling, giving him the chance he so desperately wanted. "For as long as I can remember, I always wanted to play football, but the opportunity never really pre- sented itself," Bell said. "I sat down and talked with my mom and my dad, and they told me that I didn't need to worry about money and to just do what I wanted to do. "It was never in question for me as to what I wanted to do, so as soon as I got the green light from them, I switched and made it clear what I wanted." Almost immediately after he was released from his letter of intent with Missouri State basketball, Michigan swooped in with a football offer. Bell wanted to sign with the Wol- verines in December, but couldn't because of NCAA rules that prohibit signing two letters of intent in the same year. On signing day in February, he made his decision official. "It definitely feels really good," Bell said. "It's been a long time com- ing with the route I had to take. It feels good to be officially locked in and ready to go." Bell said that he knew he couldn't go wrong with U-M and Harbaugh — who led his recruitment, along with passing game coordinator Pep Hamilton — and that his high school coaching staff had good things to say about the program. He received at- tention from other top schools, but none of the interest could com- pare to the love he was feeling from Michigan. "A lot of the schools that reached out to me after- wards I felt like were more in response to Michigan," Bell said. "I felt like the other schools were just flirting with me, and I knew Michigan wanted me. If you aren't going Ronnie Bell Takes Unusual Path To U-M STATISTICS Year Rec. Yds. TDs 2017 89 1605 21 2016 53 639 6 2015 17 232 4 HONORS • Won the 35th annual Thomas A. Simone Award as the top football player in the Kansas City area. • Also received the Otis Taylor Award, which goes to the most outstanding wide receiver/tight end in the Kansas City area, and was awarded the 810 Varsity receiver of the year award as a senior. • Named to the 2017 All-State team by USA Today. • Selected to the Missouri Football Coaches Association All-State first team for Class 6 as a senior. • Chosen for the 2017 Kansas City Star All-Metro football first team. RECRUITMENT • Originally signed with Missouri State in November to p l ay b a s k e t- ball at the next level. • Always had a d r e a m o f p l a y i n g fo o t - ball in college and was released from his Missouri State letter of in- tent once M ichi- gan showed inter- est. Nebraska, Notre Dame, Missouri and Penn State, among others, also began to show interest. • Picked up his Michigan offer on Dec. 14 and committed just four days later without ever visiting the campus. RONNIE BELL WIDE RECEIVER 6-1 • 174 PARK HILL HIGH SCHOOL KANSAS CITY, MO. RANKINGS STARS NAT. POS. STATE ✪ ✪ — — — ✪ ✪ ✪ — — 13 ✪ ✪ ✪ — — 16 2018 FOOTBALL RECRUITING ISSUE 42 THE WOLVERINE MARCH 2018 Bell set every receiving record at his school as a senior. PHOTO COURTESY DAVID SMITH PHOTOGRAPHY

Articles in this issue

Archives of this issue

view archives of The Wolverine - March 2018