To be a two-star lineman in the US high school system is usually an end to it’s own road. Maybe you go to a college someplace, some small school, but usually that's where your football career ends.
You have to move on. Adopt a team, cheer for them on Sundays. Maybe even play some touch football in the summer, but it’s really about it.
But, people have dreams. Kevin Hart had one, and it ate him alive.
“I wanted to play D-1 ball more then anything,” said Hart in a statement where he admitted his story was a fabrication.
“When I realized that wasn’t going to happen, I made up what I wanted to be reality.”
He told anybody who would listen about how he was recruited by Cal and by Oregon. He told a gym full of people, he told TV cameras. He made a show of it all, with two hats on a table and a pause.
Thing was, neither school wanted him. Or knew who he was.
Lies can destroy things. They build up, each one demanding another to validate it, until it’s too much for one man to bear. It happens from time to time. Just look at Stephen Glass, Jay Foreman or Jayson Blair.
They all got tangled up in their own lies. They have all paid quite heavily for it.
To be recruited by a big-name football program is a big deal in the US. It’s to be known all over the country by fanatics of the sport, to be seen on television and maybe, just maybe, can give you a shot at a pro career.
ESPN even has a special day of programming, just for when high school seniors commit to a school.
And it gives you all the attention you want. What Hart appears to have wanted.
They say that nobody works harder then offensive line, slogging away in the trenches for little acclaim. They don’t win the Heisman, they don’t get lucrative deals from pro teams and they rarely, if ever, get their picture in the paper.
But ironically, by lying to everybody, Hart has already got more attention then he would have ever got at Cal or Oregon as a lineman. In a way, he’s gotten what he was looking for all along.
Funny, isn’t it.