So. Fla. DL Getting Offers

Sunrise (Fla.) Piper standout defensive lineman Vlad Richard will be one of the top prospects at his position in the entire state this season. At 6-foot-3 1/2 and 255 pounds, the talented defender has been spending a lot of time playing AAU basketball recently. Now he's gearing up for the start of spring ball.

"I'm ready to get into football," Richard said. "We finished 8-3 last season, we have a new coach, and everyone seems pretty determined. I went to the NIKE Camp a couple weeks ago and I'll be at the MSL Camp at UM on Sunday."

Richard worked out as a defensive end at the NIKE Camp, turning a lot of heads. By day's end, he was clearly one of the best defensive linemen there.

"My best challenge came from No. 77 at Northwestern (Chris Barney)," he said. "He called me out in one-on-ones so I had to show him like I did in the playoffs. He remembers that. I had him beat and when I went to spin back inside, I lost my footing and we both fell to the ground. He's tight though."

Richard, whose impressive 4.41 shuttle time shows off tremendous quickness and balance, carries a 3.5 GPA inside the classroom. The rising senior, who has been playing football for four seasons now, finished last season with over 100 tackles.

"Teams ran away from my side all the time so I had to chase everything down from the backside," he said. "That's OK. Most big guys won't chase. I will. I never stop out there."

Richard, who also throws the shot and discus in track season, said he's gearing up for a big season.

"I just wanna have another playoff run and make it a little further," he said.

College coaches have noticed his skills and several programs will soon be calling off the hook.

"I got an offer from Pittsburgh and Notre Dame said they have an offer but I just need to hand in my new transcripts. I get a lot of letters and stuff like that. I'm interested in Miami, NC State, Georgia, Florida, and FSU."

The talented defensive lineman said the Hurricanes sit atop his list of favorites right now.

"Miami is No. 1," he said. "They have everything. I went to some games last year and I've already met Larry Coker. I'll be at the scrimmage on Saturday."

Richard, who plans on attending camps at UM and Florida this summer, hopes to become one of the state's best defensive linemen.

"I feel I work harder than most guys," he said. "I give moreeffort. If a coach tells me something, I do it. I shut my mouth and get it done. If I'm told to run, you'll see me running immediately. My brother (Rubbenz, headed to FIU for the fall) was a captain here last year and I learned a lot about leadership and I'll be filling that role. People better be ready to run and be in better shape than our opponents this season."

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