Coach comments on Ricky Thenarse, Part 2

Lot's of kids envision themselves as a professional athlete. And why not? However, few are able to walk that line and fewer are immortalized when they are enshrined into the Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio. Ricky has these types of visions and goals. Coach Asante will not forget any time soon about Thenarse's dreams.

Ricky Thenarse from Los Angeles (Calif.) Jordan is a 6-foot-1 and 185 pound athlete that could play cornerback, safety, running back or even wide receiver. Thenarse has already been to Nebraska on an official visit and it seems that there will be some others. One will not get one for convenience purposes.

"We had to set them all up and he has some coming up, but we haven't figured them all out yet," Coach Elijah Asante said. "He has taken Nebraska already. We really don't need to take one to USC, because we can get there anytime and we really don't want to waste an official visit. Ricky is familiar with their facilities already. There is Cal for sure, but I can't think of the date for that. There is Washington and Oregon, but we haven't set up dates for those."

When it comes to naming names on the leader board, there is one that is pretty high. It is pretty much a who's who of college football and on the lighter side of things it seems that any school that Thenarse chooses is a win-win situation. This may really come down to what position that Ricky wants to play.

"I can tell you this, and that is Nebraska is up there pretty high. They have shown the most interest, the most consistent interest, unwavering interest and Nebraska is really up there high. USC is just USC. You don't turn away from USC. You really have to really consider them. They have the very best athletes at every position. They are going to get them every year. And they got them last year and the year before. They have to like you more than you like them."

"Cal is looking good. They got a late start on Ricky, but they are jumping in on him. It's really going to come down to those I just mentioned and figuring out where does he fit in the best. It's going to be more of who wants him than who he wants. He doesn't get caught up in wanting to be a Trojan or wanting to be a Cornhusker or wanting to be a Bear. That is not the issue. The issue is which one wants you, needs you."

"The other thing is that is position-wise he really wants to play corner. And I know Nebraska wants him more of a safety and Nebraska's safety coach, Bill Busch, he undoubtedly wants him as a safety. They told him that they would let him have a chance at corner, but the only reason why they said that is because they don't want to lose him by telling him he can't play corner."

"USC and Pete Carroll from the start said corner. He played against David Ausberry and Ausberry is a tall kid, but so is Ricky. Ricky is 6-foot-1 and there is a trend going toward taller corners. But the problem is you stretch them out and they don't have elite speed. They have 4.6 speed, but they don't have 4.4 speed. Ricky has 4.4 speed, elite speed. He really projects well with what his ultimate goals are and that is to be a draft pick and play in the league and be successful."

When it comes to watching a kid like Thenarse come through there are moments, but for Coach Asante is has really been the ride and where Ricky might be headed. Coach Asante has seen the whole process for Thenarse and has witnessed the entire development first-hand. The goal that Thenarse has set for himself couldn't be higher and if it comes true his coach will be there to say he heard Ricky call his shot.

"Just watching this kid develop and knowing where he comes from and knowing where he is going is amazing. He already has a long term goal, and I love to hear him say it, he says that he is going to be a hall of famer one day. That is a long term goal and a lot goes into that. Can you walk that route? There are slim chances that he does, but if he does I will remember that he said it to me. Let's say 25 plus years from now at Canton, Ohio I will remember that he said it."

Coach Asante and Thenarse both received honors recently. Thenarse will be playing in the Cali-Florida and East-West game while Coach Asante will be Ricky's coach in the East-West game. "He's playing in the Cali-Florida game at the end of December. He is also playing in the East-West game and I am going to be the coach in that. Crenshaw and Dorsey will be on one side and we will have Poly and Dominguez on our side."

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