ATL to Stanford, Take 6: CB Ra'Chard Pippens

When The Bootleg last spoke with Ra'Chard Pippens Wednesday night, he had already decided upon a college, though he had not yet announced it. Today, however, was the day to make the news official, and minutes after getting off the phone with three Stanford coaches, Pippens called The Bootleg with an announcement: "I'm going to Stanford!"

"During my visit to Stanford, I met all the coaching staff," Ra'Chard Pippens [ra-SHARD] said. "They put up a strong, hard-hitting and fast defense and I really liked that. The assistants, the staff seemed very excited about the upcoming season. And Stanford is one of the most prestigious schools in the country.

"First I called the assistant coordinator Coach Vic [Fangio], then I called Coach Mason, and I then I called Coach Harbaugh. They were very excited."

Equally excited is Pippens himself.

"The school is great and you can't even beat that, really," he said. "The campus is beautiful. It just speaks for itself. I feel like I belong there. My parents are very excited and my friends are very excited."

As he had stated previously, Pippens reiterated that he is firm in his commitment to Stanford.

" Nothing could change it," he said. This is solid. This is the school I want to go to. … I feel like I can concentrate on my upcoming season now. I'm glad to bring the process to a close."

There remain two further notes of interest to Stanford fans. First, both cornerback and safety are among the thinnest positions as one projects Stanford's roster forward, so he couldn't have gone wrong at either position. Still, the DB Pippens has made a choice – he will be a cornerback at Stanford, at least initially.

I play cornerback now, but last year I played safety," the rising senior said of his Ola High (McDonough, Ga.) team. "I'm a cornerback, but I'm open. If they say I should play safety, then I'll play safety, but right now, they're looking at me as a corner."

Second, as is customary around these parts, we give each commit the open virtual mic.

"I'm going to play my best, work hard and compete to the top of my ability," said Pippens, who supplemented his quote with our photo for this story, an emailed picture well worth its proverbial 1,000 words.

If you had wagered that commit No. 20 for Stanford's 2011 class would have come before Independence Day, you're either a little crazy or a lot rich. (Or both.) Since Signing Day 2010 then, Stanford recruiting has experienced perhaps its most eventful six months of all time, and The Bootleg has been there for it all. We're not planning on slowing down any time soon – glad you've joined us for the ride!

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