Hidden Gem in 2012 Recruiting Class

ThirdLegLouie's picture
February 2, 2012 at 6:21p

As much as I could make this a Jamal Marcus post, because I think he was universally underrated, I wouldn't quite call him a hidden gem at this point. Once Urban said his highlights bordered on "ridiculous", the cat was pretty much out of the bag, so to speak. Plus, at this point, Marcus is like that 12 seed in the brackets during March Madness that everyone is picking to get the upset- not as much of a Cinderella story as the 12 seed that nobody picks. 

For this class, the young man who I think could be the biggest sleeper is WR Ricquan Southward ( 6'2, 190) out of Lakeland, FL [ http://rivals.yahoo.com/miami/football/recruiting/player-Ricquan-Southward-132433 ]. Lakeland is a great football HS- some of the more recent products are the Pouncey brothers and Chris Rainey. You can find his highlights here: http://vimeo.com/30317915 *. Southward is one of the least talked about kids in this class (although maybe he's the smartest? Jumping on his verbal right before Urban was hired seems like a very intelligent, calculated move given how fast the schollies dried up once Urban took over). Southward had limited exposure in HS given that he was behind several D1 players at Lakeland. He only started at WR in his senior year, but when he did, he set the single game record at Lakeland for both receptions (12) and receiving yards (238). 

When I watch Southward's film, the Buckeye that I am most reminded of is Santonio Holmes, and not just because both were underrated 3* prospects out of FL. They're similar in size and stature, although Ricquan is listed at about 3 inches taller. Really impressed with Southward's timing on his jumps, thought he got good air when he went up- Just look at him go over that DB on the first play. Also, very underrated speed- definitely has ability to take it all the way. Most of all though, I like how physical he is with the ball- runs hard and does not shy away from contact. 


Also, on the FlaVarsity 160 rankings, which rank the top 160 players in FL, Southward made the biggest jump out of any player this year. He started out at 145 and ended up at 61. This is how the FlaVarsity described Southward, "Southward has a game similar to that of Dallas Cowboys WR Dez Bryant. He is strong, big, and very physical. He is a true playmaker with the ball in his hands and always a threat to score on special teams. " Anybody else want a Dez Bryant in S&G? Ha. Regardless of whether or not he is THAT good, I still think this kid is going to be a very special Buckeye.

Lastly, here is an article from the local paper on Ricquan in regards to NSD: http://www.polkpreps.com/news/article/30193/polks-top-athletes-put-their-college-commitments-down-in-writing/


As always, Go Bucks!


*If anyone has a link to a better quality video of Southward's highlights, I would really appreciate them being posted!

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