Wednesday, April 24, 2013
RB Richard continues his hot spring
By Erik McKinney
Several California tailbacks have pulled away from the pack as the top running back targets in the state and Demario Richard (Palmdale, Calif./Palmdale) is using a very strong spring to join them.
After picking up an offer from Oregon earlier this month, Richard added another big Pac-12 offer on Wednesday morning, when he spoke with Washington head coach Steve Sarkisian.
Richard already knew the offer was coming, as Washington assistant coaches Marques Tuiasosopo and Johnny Nansen were on hand Tuesday evening to watch Richard in a high school 7-on-7 event. After a strong performance against Mission Hills (Calif.) Alemany, the Washington coaches told the Palmdale coaches to have Richard give them a call.
That call led to Tuiasosopo telling Richard to call Sarkisian at 6:30 the next morning.
"It was a quick conversation," Richard said. "He said he wanted to tell me I had an offer. He said the coaches told him I was the real deal -- good hands and good breakaway speed. He said they have to get me out there to Washington this summer."
Richard said the Washington offer was "a big one" for him, as a good friend of the family, D'Andre Goodwin, is a former Husky and Washington has long held Richard's interest.
This offer pushes Richard into double digits, as Washington joins Arizona, Arizona State, California, Nebraska, Tennessee and UCLA as some of the other programs that have entered the mix for the 5-foot-9, 197-pound back.
He said it's far too early to make a list of favorites or begin thinking about limiting his options, but it appears at this point as schools are chasing the Sun Devils, if only because he enjoyed his visit there so much.
"I loved it," he said. "It felt just like home. Everything is a family there and the recruiting process there was phenomenal. I might take another visit back there in June."
The Northwest programs will likely have an opportunity to make an impact in June, as Richard is scheduled to attend Oregon's camp and said he could package that visit with a trip up to Washington immediately afterward. Richard added that he might take summer trips out to Florida and Missouri, although nothing is set with those at this point.
Richard said that there isn't just one thing he's looking for in a program at the next level. A family atmosphere is toward the top of his list, but that's joined by a stable coaching staff, intriguing depth chart, selection of majors, whether his scholarship would continue despite an injury and several other topics. But as more schools enter the picture, Richard is doing his best to concentrate on what he can control.
"We have 31 days of practice, so I'm going to work my tail off and make sure I stay healthy for the season," he said. "Recruiting is getting really hectic, but I'm loving the atmosphere of it. I'm just going to take it day-by-day."