June 20, 2008

Ohio D-Lineman has strong camp

Westerville (Ohio) Westerville South defensive tackle Ricky Harris enjoys going to Division-I camps to hone his skills. He looks forward to taking coache's advice and he takes pleasure in the prospect of growing as a player.

Playing offensive line the majority of his high school career, Harris is just starting to get accustomed to playing aggressively as a defensive tackle, the position Ohio State wants to locate him. Thus far, Harris has done quite well with the adjustment.

"It was a great camp and it was just like the other ones. I always learn something new and always learn things I need to work on," Harris said. "I think I did really good, actually, especially when we went to the one-on-one, because when we were doing drills I got through mostly all of them just fine."

As a former 320-pound offensive lineman, coaches urged Harris to try and drop some weight and work on his mobility. As always, Harris took the advice to heart, dropping his weight down to 296 pounds and working on his ability to move.

The effort Harris has put forth to get down to a more swift weight has done wonders for the senior-to-be, and he said he has never felt better, especially now that speed as a necessity for him on the defensive line.

"In the winter I wanted to get down to the 290s and coaches were saying I was heavy and I wasn't comfortable with it," Harris said. "Now I am way, way quicker. Throughout the winter and spring I have been doing speed drills and sprints.

"Chipotle used to be my spot and I used to eat it a lot, and now I am trying to keep it around once a month."

Ohio State has yet to send an offer Harris' way, but the Buckeyes nevertheless landed a spot in the recruit's top three. The defensive tackle, being an in-state prospect, was rather fond of what the Buckeyes had to offer.

"I can say that I do like Ohio State. The coaches up there are great people, the people in general are all great. The coaches, the players, and everyone are just good people," Harris said of Ohio State. "And I like to be around good people."

"My top three right now are Cincinnati, Ohio State, and Wisconsin," he added. Ohio State is the only one of the three that has yet to give Harris an offer.

Harris has also landed offers from Boston College, Illinois, Buffalo, Kent State, and Miami (Ohio).

Nonetheless, he regards them the Buckeyes as a top choice despite a lack of a scholarship offer.

"Even though (Ohio State) didn't give me an offer right away, that's cool, I am still really interested in them," Harris said. "That's what they did with (current Ohio State player Rocco Pentello from Westerville), too. They didn't give him an offer right away either."

Harris has been particularly recruited by Ohio State safeties coach Paul Haynes, who has been in regular contact with the lineman.

"We would just talk about regular things, coming up to camp, and getting quick," Harris said. "We didn't really talk about anything really deep. Just about camp and film, stuff like that."

While Harris will continue to pursue all of his options, Ohio State continues to be a school that will possibly draw extra consideration.

"I talked to a lot of Ohio State players," Harris said, "and I really liked about how they talked about their coaches and all the positives they have to say. They isn't a lot of negative things they have to say about the coaches."

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