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This five-star LSU commit is planning visits to other schools. Is Miami on the list?

UM coach Manny Diaz on Mark Richt, and recruiting in the state of Florida.

Miami Hurricanes football coach Manny Diaz talks about former coach Mark Richt and recruiting in the state of Florida.
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Miami Hurricanes football coach Manny Diaz talks about former coach Mark Richt and recruiting in the state of Florida.

One of the newest arrivals to IMG Academy’s powerhouse high school football team, defensive back Elias Ricks, a consensus five-star, is only a few hours away from Miami.

Despite Ricks’ commitment to the LSU Tigers, the California native has seen advances from all suitors, including Ohio State and his hometown team, USC.

Add the Hurricanes into the mix, though Ricks said at IMG’s media day this week in Bradenton, that he’s not sure if Miami or Florida will get his fifth and final official visit this fall.

“Probably Miami if it happens,” Ricks said, noting he’s lined up four official visits with Alabama, LSU, Ohio State and USC already. “[Miami] has just been staying in contact with me saying I should come visit. I’m already in Florida, too.”

Ricks said Hurricanes cornerbacks coach Mike Rumph is his contact, and made contact when he arrived in Florida.

“I’ll probably set something up with Miami,” Ricks said.

Before he committed, Ricks had USC and Ohio State among his top three. Ricks made headlines earlier in the year when he said he would have committed to the Buckeyes had Urban Meyer not left.

And now he will suit up in IMG’s secondary with Ohio State commit Lejond Cavazos.

“When they started recruiting me, they’ve always been the same,” Ricks said. “Even when I committed ... my mom and I had a long talk with Coach Meyer and they still recruited me. When they started recruiting me, they went hard. So that’s kind of why they get that offical [visit].”

Ricks has only been at IMG Academy for the past two weeks when he transferred from Santa Ana (California) Mater Dei, a team that beat the Ascenders last season.

247 Sports reported Ricks chose to transfer so he could graduate early. IMG head coach Kevin Wright said not only is Ricks aiming to graduate early from high school and early enroll, but he also is dual-enrolled during high school so he can graduate from college in three years.

“It takes somebody, who is a special kid, who really has some long-term vision to do that,” Wright said.

Before he puts pen to paper to make it official during December’s signing day, Ricks is taking his allotted five official visits during the 2019 college football season.

He said USC’s visit is Nov. 2, Ohio State’s visit is Nov. 22 and LSU’s visit is Nov. 30. Ricks said he doesn’t know when he will visit whichever school gets his fifth visit.

Miami, though, is appealing due to being an in-state school, and Ricks said he’d want to see everything from the program since he doesn’t know a lot about the Canes.

“I want to see what the whole staff sees, what they do, how they do it, their defensive scheme, stuff like that,” Ricks said.

Sports reporter Jason has covered high school, college and pro sports since joining the Bradenton Herald in 2010. He’s won Florida Press Club awards for sports feature and column writing. He currently writes college and pro sports stories for the McClatchy East Region real-time team.
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