By David Fong
TROY — Get some rest, big guy.
During his whirlwind college recruiting process, Troy High School offensive lineman Travis Hall saw more than his fair share of sleepless nights as he pondered his future. All of that finally came to an end recently, however, as Hall signed his national letter of intent to play football at Notre Dame College, a Division II program located near Cleveland.
“This feels like a huge weight has been lifted off my shoulders,” Hall said just moments after he had put pen to paper and made it official. “I feel like I can finally sleep at night. I stayed up a lot of nights texting coaches and had a lot of late-night conversations with my parents about what I should do. I just wanted to try to find the place that fit the best for me.”
For Hall, finding the right fit was particularly difficult because he was on the cusp of receiving Division I scholarship offers and frequently found himself torn between the chance to walk on at a Division I program and possibly earn a scholarship, or taking the guaranteed offer from a host of Division II programs.
Ultimately, the decision for Hall came down to walking on at the University of Toledo or taking the scholarship offer from Notre Dame College.
“I had to think about that a lot,” Hall said. “But Notre Dame said I’d have the opportunity to possibly come in and possibly start as a freshman and they offered me a scholarship — I felt like they wanted me a little more.”
The 6-foot-4, 308-pound Hall was a force for the Trojans along the offensive line throughout his career. A three-year starter for Troy, he played guard his seasons on varsity before moving out to tackle as a senior. He helped clear the way for a Trojan offense that averaged more than 400 yards and 33 points per game, second in the 20-team Greater Western Ohio Conference.
Hall was named second-team All-Ohio, first-team All-Southwest District, All-Greater Western Ohio Conference and first-team All-GWOC American North Division. As a junior, he earned second-team All-GWOC North honors.
“Travis is a kid who we had some big expectations for going into the season, and he lived up to every one of them,” Troy coach Matt Burgbacher said. “I feel like he is going to go up to Notre Dame and he’s going to get even better. As good as he already is, he has not come close to hitting his peak yet. I think he’s going to flourish up there.
“He’s a kid who absolutely could have walked on at a (Mid-American Conference) school as a walk on and played his way into a scholarship, but there’s not much difference in the quality of play at a Division II school like Notre Dame. There’s a lot of Division I-type of kids at a program like that. It’s going to be a great fit for Travis.”
“This is where I want to spend the next four years of my life,” he said. “This was definitely the best fit for me.”
Contact David Fong at [email protected]; follow him on Twitter @thefong