Michigan State's defensive line already is impressive, but it just got even better as former Ohio State defensive end Kenny Hayes elected to transfer to MSU.
Per NCAA rules, Hayes will have to sit out the 2012 season. It has not been reported whether Hayes will be on scholarship right away, but with recent transfers, there might be a spot. A somewhat-new Big Ten rule change allows a player to transfer within the conference and receive financial aid -- a scholarship -- would allow Hayes to be on scholarship.
He will have three years of eligibility remaining come the fall of 2013.
Hayes was one of the top recruits in the nation in 2011, ranked No. 68 by Rivals. He was rated a four-star recruit by both Rivals and Scout out of Toledo Whitmer -- the same school that produced Michigan State freshman safety Mark Meyers.
Hayes was granted his release from Ohio State after sitting out spring ball with recurring headaches, and decided to transfer. He redshirted in 2011.
The Ohio State athletic department lists Hayes at 6-foot-5, 285 pounds.
At his size, Hayes is a possible candidate to move inside to defensive tackle, a hole the Spartans will need to fill again in 2013 after the graduation of Anthony Rashad White. The Spartans also will lose Tyler Hoover to graduation. With the three years of eligibility remaining, Hayes could be an ideal fit for the Spartans at the position to provide stability.
The Spartans made a similar move with redshirt freshman Damon Knox, moving him to defensive tackle from end this fall. Knox is listed at 6-4, 278 pounds.
If Hayes remains at defensive end, which at this point seems to be the plan, he would add even more depth to the position in 2013 with Marcus Rush, Shilique Calhoun and Joel Heath -- and maybe even Will Gholston. Calhoun (6-4, 240) and Heath (6-6, 266) also bring nice size to the position. Five-star recruit Lawrence Thomas moved to defensive end in fall practices.
Calhoun, Heath, Knox, Thomas and Hayes all will be in the same class, forming a potentially lethal defensive line group.