- Jared Shanker, ESPN Staff Writer
It is not quite six degrees of separation, but Nick Richardson (Westerville, Ohio/Westerville Central) and Michigan State coach Mark Dantonio are connected even if in the slightest of ways.
Dantonio grew up in Zanesville, Ohio, the same place Richardson’s mom is from. Now, the junior offensive tackle has an offer to play for Dantonio at Michigan State.
“I was on the field during pregame warm-ups and talked to coach Dantonio and that’s when he offered,” he said. “He’s from where my mom grew up so we talked about that a little bit.”
It was the first to Michigan State for Richardson, who also holds offers from Cincinnati, Illinois and Toledo.
“It was good. I liked the campus and liked the game day atmosphere,” he said. “They have really good tradition, good history and I like the coaching staff so far.”
The 6-foot-4, 280-pound Richardson has not made many visits, but of the ones he has, Michigan State ranks right up there.
“The facilities were real nice and I was really surprised how big everything was compared to other schools and how close it was to everything in general,” Richardson said.
Living just outside Columbus, Ohio State is one of the many teams showing significant interest in Richardson. Much of the Big Ten is interested, as well as programs such as Georgia and West Virginia.
The last visit Richardson took was to Ohio State for the Nebraska game, and he keeps in contact with the staff and recruiter Luke Fickell.
“They just tell me to keep staying in touch with them and check in constantly,” he said. “I’m going to send them my film this weekend and they’re going to get back to me with where they stand.”
545dTom Luginbill and Craig Haubert