JUCO big-man taking Clemson official

With All-ACC first team power forward Trevor Booker heading to the NBA, the Clemson basketball staff is looking to reel in the highest rated junior college power forward prospect in the class of 2010.

PF Ricardo Ratliffe Profile

Central Florida Community College (Ocala) four-star power forward Ricardo Ratliffe recently talked to CUTigers about his official visit this weekend.

"I'm just trying to check out the campus, see the college, see the atmosphere. I've only been to South Carolina once," he said.

Ratliffe has taken notice of the three-straight trips to the NCAA Tournament by Clemson, which he recognizes as "an established program".

"They always have a good team, recruit good players and get a lot of W's," he said.

Clemson did not recruit Ratliffe out of Kecoughtan HS (Hampton, VA). During his first year at CFCC, head coach Tim Ryan recommended that he look at the Tigers.

Combined with the departure of Booker, Ratliffe realizes the opportunity at Clemson.

"They're looking for an impact player to fill that spot, so I figured I'd take a visit and check it out," he said.

That's the biggest factor for Ratliffe as he chooses between Clemson, Arkansas, Alabama, Missouri and Cincinnati.

"That's a big thing, if I could just come in and play right away because I'm a junior and going to have two years left," he said.

Ratliffe shared thoughts on each of his final five schools.

Clemson: I heard it's one of the best campuses in the ACC. I just want to get to know the players and the coaches a little more, have fun.

I like the up-tempo style of play. I like the coach, he seems to go by the book…I really like that he doesn't break the rules.

Missouri: I also like their coaching staff and their style of play. It's kind of similar to Clemson, up-tempo, running. I like that. Their players show all of their talents.

Arkansas: Their coaches have been recruiting me since I was in high school. So I've known them for a long time. I really like their fans. They're the only team in the area. There are no pros, so their fans are just crazy for their hawgs.

Alabama: Coach (Anthony) Grant has been recruiting me since I was in high school. Because he was at Virginia Commonwealth and he was trying to see if he could get me in there. I've known coach Grant for a long time and he can get a big man in the NBA.

Cincinnati: I heard from them a little bit later. That was one of my favorite teams to watch growing up. I liked watching Kenyon Martin and they have had a lot of success over there. The coaches there are real cool too. I just figured I'd give them a look.

This past season at CFCC, Ratliffe averaged 27.4 points and 11.3 rebounds a game.

Ratliffe has already taken official trips to Arkansas and Alabama. After his weekend in Clemson, he'll take a weekend off before heading to Missouri and then Cincinnati.

After the visit to Cincinnati, he'll reach a decision.

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