With the need for speed and big-time playmakers at the wide receiver position, the Mississippi State coaching staff have their eyes set on one of California's finest, Richard Sherman. Richard officially visited MSU this past weekend to find out more about them. What were his impressions of.....
...The town of Starkville - "My view has changed a lot because of the small city environment. I didn't really know about all the details. And I learned a lot on my trip. I loved the small town environment where everybody knows about the team and everybody wants them to win. And the fans are loyal. And the players get loved. I love that."
...The people - "I really didn't expect the people to be as nice as they were. I expected to meet the players, go out a little bit, maybe go to a movie or something, tour the campus and that would probably be it. But when we got there we ate a lot. And I loved that. I loved the food."
...The gameday crowd - "I wasn't expecting the crowd to be that big or to be that energetic because they weren't having the best season. They were wild and I loved every minute of it."
...The players - "It went great with the players. I loved all of our hosts. They are all freshmen. They are definitely guys that I can play with. They told me how the practices are and how (MSU head) Coach (Sylvester) Croom is. We played basketball with Quinton (Wesley) and Jamar (Chaney). Then we went to one of the other player's dorm and played video games for awhile. Then we sat there and talked and learned about the practices, how they feel about Coach Croom. Most of the players love Coach Croom. The freshmen told me that everything he told them came to pass. He told them some might play, some might redshirt. It depended on how hard you worked and how quickly you caught on. The ones that caught on are playing, the ones that didn't are redshirting. And they are fine with it."
...The facilities - "I like the new facilities. At the beginning I only knew about the new track facility."
Speaking of track, Richard, considered one of the top triple jumpers in high school, was able to spend time with the track coach while on his visit.
"(Associate head track) Coach (Steve) Dudley and I met for about 10 minutes," said Richard. "He talked to me about the new (track) stadium, and showed me a picture of it."
Overall, it sounds like the trip went great. Were there any negatives at all?
"Not really," Richard noted. "Pretty much the only negative I could see is the weather difference. The rain wouldn't be a problem because I love rain. And they have the in-door facility for when it rains. The heat and humidity would take a little getting used to, I believe."
With one official visit in the books, what's on the horizon as far as other visits?
"I take a visit to Oregon on the 13th (of January)," he explained. "I was going to Stanford this weekend, but we have a football game on that day. I'm not sure of the date now. Colorado also. Nevada is talking about a visit and I will more than likely visit them sometime in December." [Editor's Note: Richard's team, the Dominguez Dons, will play Palos Verdes Peninsula on Saturday night in the CIF Southern Section Division III semifinals.]
As for favorites, what schools are currently atop his list?
"Mississippi State, Stanford and Colorado," said Richard. "Mississippi State and Stanford are at the top of my list. I am very highly interested in both of them. But State has a slight lead. But I guess I would put them even because I haven't visited Stanford, yet, on an official (visit)."
Any coaches coming in for in-home visits anytime soon?
"(MSU assistant) Coach (Guy) Holliday plans on coming in Sunday," said Richard. "And Coach Croom will probably be in within the next couple of weeks. Stanford have said they are coming in, but they haven't given me a date."
Check out the link below to watch some of Richard's best plays as a senior. The quarterback throwing the ball to him is another MSU recruit, Marvin Johnson. Marvin is being recruited as an athlete by Mississippi State.
Gene Swindoll is the publisher of the Dawgs' Bite, Powered by GenesPage.com website, the source for Mississippi State sports on Scout.com sports network. You can contact him by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.