Former Lake Highland Prep star learns cold, hard truth about NCAA gray-shirting

“I didn’t really feel like going through the whole recruiting process a second time.”

Who would? It’s no fun trying to land a college scholarship, especially after you have already landed one.

“My dad was really mad. My mom was mad, but my dad … he was really mad,” said Law. “But even though she was mad, my mom kept talking about having SMU on that paper when I graduate and that will mean a lot.”

He remained in Dallas this fall and has been able to use the team facilities, but nothing else. Not being part of the team hurts. He feels like an outsider. And not only is he constantly reminded of his predicament when being excluded from the team, but other things constantly poke at him.

Like when SMU came to Orlando this season to play UCF.

“My phone was blowing up that week. People were asking me about tickets or even after the game they were asking me where I was [on the sidelines], that they were looking for me,” said Law, who recently returned to Orlando for the rest of the year. “I didn’t want to have to explain the whole gray-shirt thing to everybody again and again. A lot of people have no idea what it means.”

It’s a gray area that cult movie hero “Fletch” would certainly consider to be more charcoal in color. (Sorry, insider joke there.)

Sunday's disappointment of not being able to celebrate with the team for its impending trip to Hawaii was compounded by the unintentional jabs posted to Law's Facebook newsfeed Sunday night as friends touted their own excitement about heading to a bowl game.

Just more pokes in the ribs.

Good friend Tyree Holder from Tampa Catholic posted about his Ball State team headed to the Beef ‘O’Brady’s Bowl in St. Petersburg. Not only was it tough to be excited for his friend, but it was the same school to which he and Holder took an official visit together last year.

“Yeah when I found out they were going there, that got me upset too,” Law said. “It seems like it’s been something every week.”

He’s not even sure what position he’ll play once he does hit the field. He arrived last summer and his locker was in with the receivers group. He had originally been told  he was going to be playing cornerback. He came out of Lake Highland as an athlete, and played running back, receiver and defensive back for the Highlanders.  

“At this point, I’ll play whatever,” Law said.

He’ll emerge from the situation next month when he finally enrolls. He's been through a lot. Even at the early stages of his recruiting process Law had a scholarship offers pulled by West Virginia and NC State, which filled up at his position. 

He’s happy his wait is almost over, but don’t expect him to be Mr. Trustworthy. Not yet anyway.

Chris Hays is the Sentinel's recruiting coverage coordinator and can be reached at Follow us on Twitter at @Os_Recruiting and Facebook at Orlando Sentinel Recruiting and now on Pinterest at Orlando Recruiting.

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