The Spring Evaluation Period opens on April 15, and though the recruiting process is well underway for many in the 2014 class, others could emerge as top targets once coaches get on the road. A prospect who could take off then is Racine (Wis.) Horlick athlete Rickey Neal.
The 6-foot-3, 200-pound Neal played primarily quarterback as a junior, rushing for 1,259 yards and 13 touchdowns and throwing for an additional 480 yards and four more scores. Neal does not expect to be calling out the cadence when he gets to college, though.
"I am going to be a receiver in college," Neal said. "I think that's where I [project] best. If they recruit me as a quarterback I will be a quarterback, but most colleges prefer me at receiver or at safety."
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Illinois State jumped out with an early scholarship offer for Neal. He does not have any spring visits planned, and may wait until the summer to start visiting schools and performing for coaches.
"I have been getting multiple handwritten letters from Michigan," Neal said. "They really want me to go to their camp and said they really hope to see me. They have been telling me about their program a little bit."
Other colleges showing interest include Michigan State, Ball State, Princeton, Yale, Harvard, Minnesota, Florida State and Wisconsin. Neal is a strong student in the classroom, carrying a 3.6 GPA, and has academic considerations as a top priority as he evaluates schools.
"I really want to major in business," Neal said. "After I retire I may want to own my own company."