by Lee Brecheen
September 12, 2011 – A common phrase used in the recruiting world among coaches and those heavily involved in recruiting like me is the phrase “He’s a football player.” This is a phrase to say maybe a kid doesn’t have the great speed, size or frame you’re looking for, but when you turn on the tape he’s a football player. He’s tough, looks faster than his forty time, plays the game at a high level, and most of all is a leader. He can play at the next level because of these intangibles.
Ricky Wyatt of Neville High School is one of those “Football Players” on the field. He makes plays, is tough as nails, hits like a truck, and is a team leader. This kid is full throttle for 60 minutes for his team at Neville High School in Monroe, Louisiana.
What really impresses me even more is when the team uses Ricky as a Fullback on offense to bring a tough blocker and someone who can run if needed for a hard yard or two. In the weight room, he is super strong in all areas of the gym. He bench presses 350 pounds, squats 460, and cleans 315. On the field he hand times an impressive 4.7/40 for a kid that’s a ripped up 5-11, 227 pounds in size. Ricky looks faster because he reads and reacts every play. If you see the ball he is usually around it every play making plays.
Ricky Wyatt is a no brainer for IAA football as a Fullback or Middle Linebacker. If a DI program gives him a shot he could surprise a few people and become a good player in my opinion at Middle Linebacker for the right DI school.
Ricky Wyatt is also an excellent student with an ACT score of an 18 and a GPA of a 3.3 to 3.4. I’ve seen this kid play the last two years as a starter, and I’m looking forward to seeing him play again this year for the third year as a starter, and tough leader for his Neville team.
Be sure to order the 2011 Louisiana Football Magazine preview at www.lafootballmagazine.com/store for more on Ricky Wyatt and the Neville High School football team, as well as all the High Schools in the state covered in depth.
I hope you enjoy the interview below with writer Mark Clements.
Interview by Mark Clements
LAFM: For starters, what’s your current height, weight and forty time?
RW: My height is 5’11”, my weight is 227 and my forty time is about a 4.7.
LAFM: Are you originally from Louisiana?
RW: Yes sir – Monroe.
LAFM: Which teams did you root for growing up?
RW: Growing up my favorite college team I believe was TCU and Penn State.
LAFM: When did you first start playing football?
RW: I believe first grade is when I started playing.
LAFM: Has it always been a big part of your family? Have you had any family members who played football in the past?
RW: Actually, my family is mostly basketball people.
LAFM: Do you play any other sports?
RW: No, I just play football.
LAFM: Do you play any other positions besides linebacker?
RW: I play a little bit of running back but that’s all.
LAFM: Is there anyone in college or the Pros that you look up to or try to model your game after?
RW: Pro wise I look up to Patrick Willis and Ray Lewis and Clay Matthews. [I like] their awareness at linebacker and their speed and just the basic things a linebacker does.
LAFM: What do you think is your biggest strength as a player and what part of your game are you trying to improve upon most next year?
RW: My best strength is downhill running. I’m a run stop linebacker but also balanced coverage-wise. Something that I probably need to improve on a little bit is coverage.
LAFM: Have you been to any camps at this point? If so, which ones?
RW: I went to ULM and ULL’s football camp.
LAFM: Which colleges have you received offers from?
RW: Not that I know of. I’ve talked to some coaches at ULL and ULM and Southeastern.
LAFM: Which schools stick out right now at the top of your list?
RW: I believe ULM is probably one of them. I just like the atmosphere and it’s close to home and how the football team works.
LAFM: Have you thought about what you might want to study in college?
RW: I want to major in kinesiology.
LAFM: What are some goals you’ve set for next season, for yourself and for the team?
RW: Not really, I just play the game and have fun and hope for the best. As a team I believe we want to win State.
LAFM: Which school is your favorite to play against, or which game gets you the most fired up each year?
RW: I believe its Ouachita. It’s a big rivalry game between a 4A and a 5A team. If we play at Neville, it’s a great environment to play around.
LAFM: What are some of the most memorable games or plays you’ve been a part of?
RW: Last year I believe my most memorable games were the West Monroe game and the Teurlings game. West Monroe game I think I had about 14 tackles and Teurlings game I had three rushing touchdowns. We had to change up our whole offensive scheme.
LAFM: And lastly can you give us your current GPA and ACT score?
RW: My GPA right now I believe is like a 3.3 or 3.4. My first ACT score, the last time I took it was an 18.