When talking about recruits flying under the radar, defensive back Kenneth Dicks III out of Lambert High School (Suwanee, Georgia) is a prototypical example. Despite posting 38 tackles, 9 pass-breakups, and 5 interceptions in 11 games last year, the rising senior didn't start getting notable recognition until after his appearance at Nike's "The Opening" regional in Charlotte, where he posted the highest SPARQ rating (a scoring system designed to measure sport-specific athleticism) at the event and the second-highest SPARQ rating in the entire country. Since then, the 6-foot 200-pound athletic phenom has received 5 offers in less than 4 days, including ones from ACC competitors Wake Forest and Louisville.
Another school Dicks has been receiving a lot of attention from is Georgia Tech. He receives a good amount of mail from the staff, and visited the campus to watch them scrimmage during the spring. By all accounts, he enjoyed the visit. "My visit was great. I loved the energy in the scrimmage and how the coaches don't just focus on the football side but also help with academics as well. They makes sure the athlete gets the best chance to become a productive citizen outside of football."
That last part is a notable sentiment from Dicks, who gets his business done on and off the field, posting a 3.5 GPA with an 1150 on the SAT, with plans to get it over 1200. While Dicks is still keeping his options open and feeling out what major factors will influence his decision (such as location or program prestige), one thing is certain: he'll be looking for a school with good academics in addition to good football. "My recruiting process really just started for me, so right now I'm discussing my options with my parents and they would like me to keep all my options open. But academics is extremely important to me and attending a college with a strong academic program is very high on my list."
Ranked as the #10 safety in GA according to Recruit Georgia, and consistently ranked in the top 100 players in North Georgia, Dicks felt that he had a good outing at "The Opening", and overall thought highly of the event. "Excellent experience, I had a great time. There were many great athletes there, lots of talent and I just wish them all the best in their recruiting process." When asked about upcoming camps and college visits, Kenneth noted that it was still in the works. "I'm going to discuss the camp options with my parents in the next few weeks."
Dicks is also a versatile defensive back, able to play any of the defensive back positions, from safety to nickleback to cornerback. "Some schools like me at corner, some schools at safety. And some want me to play both." Although he's now fielding interest from several different schools, don't look for a decision anytime soon. Dicks didn't feel like there was a clear leader for his recruitment yet, but did tell Recruit Georgia before his "The Opening" showcase that he while he's interested in everyone at this time, he would like to hear from more ACC and SEC schools, and that Air Force and Georgia Southern have been recruiting him hardest to this point.
Multiple staff members contributed to this article.
[Editor's note: In the time since this interview was first conducted, Dicks has received several more offers, including one from Georgia Tech after attending their football day camp the weekend of June 3rd & 4th.]