Ohio State was viewed by some as favorite to land former five-star cornerback Elias Ricks before he picked LSU during the 2020 recruiting cycle. And now that he’s back on the market after entering his name into the transfer portal earlier this week, the Buckeyes apparently have a second chance to secure his pledge.
In fact, Ricks told 247Sports national recruiting analyst Greg Biggins that Ohio State is one of four schools he’s considering, joining Alabama, Georgia and USC.
“Ohio State was my No. 2 choice out of high school,” Ricks said. “At the time, Urban Meyer was my lead recruiter and we talked all the time and I loved Ohio State. I’ve been texting with Coach (Kerry) Coombs and we’re supposed to get on a call later tonight. They’re another school that has great defensive back play and a great tradition for getting guys drafted, and that’s obviously a goal for me.
“They’re a winning program, and that’s important to me. I like Coach (Ryan) Day, and he’s one of the guys I talked with back in high school, too. He’s a great coach and there’s a lot of things about Ohio State that stand out.”
The 6-foot-2 and 195-pound Ricks was considered the second-best cornerback and No. 14 prospect overall in his class coming out of Bradenton (Fla.) IMG Academy, where he played his senior season after transferring from Santa Ana (Calif.) Mater Dei.
He was then recognized as a freshman All-American after leading the Tigers with four interceptions in 2020, including two that he returned for a touchdown, but was limited to just six games this fall due to a shoulder injury that required season-ending surgery.
Two additional things that help the Buckeyes in their recruitment of Ricks this time around is that he played Pop Warner football alongside redshirt freshman quarterback C.J. Stroud – who also hails from Rancho Cucamonga, Calif. – and is a close family friend of redshirt freshman cornerback Lejond Cavazos.
Ricks hopes to make his decision among the four schools in mid-January and enroll in classes in January.
“I don't have any visits set yet but I would like to take a few if I can,” Ricks said. "The biggest factors for me is finding a comfortable fit with the coaching staff, a place that I can win at and a place where they know what my goals and aspirations are. I want to be one and done so I’m looking to make an immediate impact wherever I go.”
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