Hicks Getting Acquainted With Suitors

Of the roughly 700 high school football players at the Woody Hayes Athletic Center on Friday in Columbus, the highest-rated prospect had perhaps the most leisurely day, but Jordan Hicks' trip was important nonetheless.

Jordan Hicks, ranked Scout.com's No. 10 player in the nation, had little to prove in regards to physical ability, so while the star linebacker's peers did their best to impress college coaches and scouts in attendance, he did some evaluating of his own.

He chatted up members of the Ohio State coaching staff, including linebackers coach Luke Fickell and recruiting coordinator John Peterson, talked to current players and met 2010 verbal commitment Scott McVey, all in an effort to gather information as he works his way toward picking a college destination from a final six of Ohio State, Georgia, USC, Florida, Texas and Alabama.

After the camp was over, Hicks said he enjoyed his day in Columbus, a place to which he is no stranger thanks to its proximity to his southwestern Ohio high school, West Chester Lakota West.

He has not been to any other colleges this summer and does not intend to go anywhere else in the near future. Instead, he hopes to spend the next month concentrating on getting ready his senior season.

When he returns to the task of narrowing his college choices, he says the quality of the people will be the most important factor.

"Without good people you're not going to go far," he said.

He feels like he has a good handle on the quality of the coaches recruiting him at all of the schools remaining on his list, although he acknowledged the possibility everyone is not who they seem on the recruiting trail.

He nodded knowingly before explaining how he plans to expose any misrepresentations.

"That will come with the officials, like when you're hanging out with the players," he said. "You ask the players, ‘Is this coach really the way he is?' Because the players will be real with you. I was talking today with a few Ohio State players and they were just real with me."

At this point, his level of familiarity is not the same with each finalist, but he intends to fix that.

"I know the people who are recruiting me (at each school)," he said. "There are some programs I don't really know the majority of the people. Like here, I know everybody. I know the offensive linemen and everyone.

"It's kind of hard to figure it all out, but when it comes down do it, I think I'll know."

Though already a five-star recruit, Hicks is still looking for ways to improve himself as a player.

Now weighing 220 pounds, the 6-2 Hicks said he hopes to put on about five more pounds of muscle to get stronger without sacrificing speed. He intends to improve as a tackler and at making stops at the point of attack.

"I felt like with my speed I was able to get people from the back, run them down, but this year I'd like to get some big hits through the gaps," he said.

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