Southward a sleeper no more

Lakeland (Fla.) wide receiver Ricquan Southward believes that his recruitment remained stale until recently because he didn't participate in any summer camps or events. Recently his midseason junior highlights were distributed and it resulted in his first two offers, which come from BCS-level programs.
"Ohio State and Ole Miss have offered me," Southward said. "Ohio State was the first school to offer me."
Southward talked about the conversation he had with the Buckeyes when they offered him.

Article Continues Below
"I was kind of excited and it was nerve-wracking at the same time," Southward said. "I talked to their head coach (Luke Fickell) and I believe their tight ends coach (John Peterson). They just said they had seen my film and liked what they have seen. They wished me good for the rest of my season and said they would keep up with me."
The 6-foot-2, 190-pound wideout also had an opportunity to speak with a pair of coaches from Ole Miss after he received the offer from the Rebels.
"I spoke to their head coach (Houston Nutt) and an assistant coach (Chris Vaughn)," Southward said. "When they offered me they told me not to forget that they were one of the first teams to offer me when it comes down to decision time."
In addition to those two programs, Southward is also drawing interest from an in-state program.
"I am also hearing from Miami," Southward said. "I actually heard from them before I got the offers and then I talked to them again just the other night. I am talking with Coach (Jethro) Franklin. He has just said that they saw my film and they really liked me. He said they just need another receiver because I think they have three seniors on their team right now. They want me to come down on Saturday and hopefully then I get the offer."
Others showing interest in Southward also include Florida, Florida State, Marshall, Maryland, Mississippi State, Temple, and Texas Tech.
This past week, Southward and a number of his Lakeland teammates took an unofficial visit to Florida State. As for official visits, those will come after his senior season concludes.
"I know that after my season I want to take an official visit to Ohio State," Southward said. "Ole Miss and Miami for official visits probably too."
On the season, Southward has 1,259 all-purpose yards including 670 receiving yards and six receiving touchdowns.