Last weekend, the premiere of the 2003 edition of Keith Rivers was delayed by a severe lightning and thunderstorm in Lake Mary, Fla. Now, Rivers has to keep himself pent up for another week, and that could spell a natural disaster for one unlucky school
“I wish we had a bubble,” Rivers said about his upcoming game. “I can’t wait to get out there. I really wanted to play, but now we have a scrimmage with another team. I don’t think that they are very good. They are a new school, and they will be playing us for a half, and then another team for a half. That isn’t a very fun way to start off a football season.”
Now standing 6-foot-3 and 215-pounds, Rivers is ready to demolish high school competition once again. Keith’s trail of carnage over the past three years has already caught the eye of many college coaches, but Rivers already has a solid list that stands at five, and yes, he still has a favorite.
“I just loved my visit to USC,” he said. “When I stood on the field at the coliseum, I could just feel the tradition from head to toe. It was an awesome feeling.”
“It’s still pretty even. I think it is USC just a little out in front, and then the next three pretty even.”
What happened to the list of five?
“Florida State is really the fifth place team,” he said. “I remember them as the team of Peter Warrick and Andre Wadsworth, back when I could name every player on the team. Now, I just see that they are in trouble, and that they aren’t winning like they did before.”
With USC on top, and Florida State in the middle, three schools make up the meat of the sandwich. All three teams could be ready to jump into contention, or fall out.
“Oklahoma, Miami, and Florida are all right there, even with each other,” he said. “I like these schools a lot, and I want to know a little more about them.”
Rivers made an early visit to Miami for the Nike Camp this summer. Rivers still seems luke-warm about his visit.
“Miami was okay I guess,” he said. “I wasn’t really that into it. It just didn’t feel like college, and there wasn’t a whole lot to do. I know that it will be different on my visit, though. With Miami, it is really about the opportunity to play, and to win. I talked to coach Coker recently, and he seems pretty straight forward, like a good guy.”
Florida is a matter of distance and familiarity. The Gators are only two hours from Rivers’ front door, and he has many friends there.
“Coach Zook is a great guy, and UF is a great place,” Rivers, a five-star prospect that is ranked as the nation’s top linebacker prospect and the top player in the Southeast.
“Coach Zook is very charismatic, and that is probably why he recruits so well. I have a lot of friends there, and it’s only two hours from here.”
Oklahoma is the only school not near a beach, but Rivers is drawn there by their tradition with great linebackers, and a great linebacker coach.
“I like OU a lot too,” he said. “They have great linebackers with Lehman and Mitchell, and of course, Calmus. I really like coach Venables, and I hope to talk to coach Stoops soon.”
For the son of a military man there is one concern with all the travel - fitting in.
Rivers hopes to use his visits to see where he will fit in the best. It remains to be seen whether he likes the East coast or the West coast better.
“I think I’m an anywhere type of guy,” he said. “I really want to fit in with the players, though. That is really big for me. I haven’t lived in California for a long time. I mean, I was stoked to be back, but I still have to see how I fit with all of the guys.”
Stoked? Spoken like a true Californian.