Pitt Football Recruiting: Tom Ricketts Becomes A Panther

Todd Graham is a transfer-inducing machine (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

I don't know how he does it, but Todd Graham's got yet another transfer. Fortunately, it's not another cornerback or safety. This one's at a real area of need - offensive line. But this isn't just any transfer - it's former four-star lineman Tom Ricketts.

Ricketts, you may remember, was a big target of Pitt's during Dave Wannstedt's reign as head coach. Despite the fact that both his parents were former athletes at Pitt, no dice.

Ricketts now looks back on that decision and says he should have done things differently:

"I made a decision (to go to Penn State) as a 17-year-old kid at the end of my junior year and never got a chance to think it through," said Ricketts, a 2010 high school graduate.

Ricketts, 6-foot-6, 285 pounds, is in the process of enrolling in classes at Pitt for the fall semester and plans to be at practice Monday.

"I'm signed and ready to get the show on the road," he said.

Honestly, as much as I want to give him the benefit of the doubt (and as glad as I am to have him aboard), 'never got a chance to think it through'? With parents that ended up at Pitt and all the hype surrounding his decision, I can't help but think that's all he thought about for a year or two before committing to Penn State.
Ricketts also added, though, that he was homesick:

"I just signed the papers — everything’s official," Ricketts told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. "It just wasn’t working for me at Penn State. I was homesick. I made the decision to go there when I was 17.

"I’m just real excited to be back home now and playing for Pitt."

Now that I get - happens to a lot of kids ... especially freshmen. Ricketts will need to sit out this season, but will be ready to go in '12.

Meanwhile, Penn State fans are predictably playing down the decision while ripping Ricketts. Jumping to the conclusion that the kid can't play (especially a redshirt freshman) just because he didn't get on the field at a major D-I program in his first season is a bit insane. Who knows if he'll turn out to be a star, but I'll take my chances with him right now - especially because Pitt is in need of more quality depth on the offensive line.

Thank God Jeff over at BSD put things into proper perspective a bit later letting us know that all Penn State fans aren't crazy.

Another quality pickup for Todd Graham, who in all actuality probably had little to do with the move. Still, it's pretty amazing that he continues to add transfers at the rate he has.
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