Like father like son

Some might consider it pressure to follow in the footsteps of a family member who is noted as one of the Mississippi Gulf Coast's all-time great high school tailbacks, but not Ricky (Jr).

"I look at it as a blessing to have this opportunity. Not too many people play the same position for the same school as your father," added Ricky Floyd (Jr) while waiting in line for a ride with his mother in Disney World. "Dad is always giving me pointers on how to hold the ball, how to see the hole quicker and stuff like that. I am learning from one of the best on a day to day basis. It is like having your coach around you 24/7. What else could I ask for?"

Gulfport's all time rushing leader, Ricky (Sr), also has a perspective on this.

"I told my son at an early age that he could play any sport that he wanted to," added the former high school All-American who later starred at Southern Mississippi under Bobby Collins. "But he just had it in his blood. Ricky (Jr) just loves the game of football, and he loves to have the ball in his hands (laugh). As a parent, I could not deny him something he loves so much. It is his passion, just like it was with me. But as a parent, we do not put any pressure on him. Ricky (Jr) is his own man and has his own running style."

That running style enabled him to rush for over a 1, 000 yards as a junior despite battling a high ankle sprain for the better part of the season.

The 5' 11", 200 pound tailback earned All-Region and was named one of Gulfport's Team Captains for his own the field accomplishments.

"I am more of a down hill runner," added Ricky (Jr). "I am not a shifty back. I am all down hill."

What would Floyd like to work on in the offseason?

"I am just working hard in the weight room. I am currently benching 300 and squatting 450, so I want to get those numbers up. I am doing a lot of agility drills. I am currently running track in the relays and 200 (meter) to work on my speed."

Which colleges are currently showing Floyd the most interest?

"I am getting a lot of letters from Auburn, MSU, and Ole Miss, but Princeton just sent me a letter, so I am pretty excited about that."

Grades are priority around the Floyd household.

"Mom told me a long time ago what was going to be number, and it was not football (laugh). I listened pretty good (laugh). I have a 98 average and a 24 on the ACT test. I am going to retake it so I can improve on it though. I think I can do a little better than that."

Which colleges have caught Ricky's eye so far?

"I am really looking at Auburn and Southern Mississippi, as far as catching my eye, for right now."

What stands out about Auburn?

"I went to a couple of their games last year, and their field, all I can say is wow! Their team is so organized too. They have a specific coach for every single thing. And the thing about Auburn is that they work with every individual like everyone is the star. That is what I really like about Auburn."

And USM?

"First of all, that is the school my dad went to. So, that is already a plus. And besides, I have been going to their games ever since I was a little kid, so it feels like home. Plus, it is only like an hour away from home, so I can come home when ever I need to."

Who is closest to offering?

"Well, I know Ole Miss called my coaches right before I left on my vacation. I will have to wait and see what that is about when I get back."

When it comes decision time, what will be the main factors?

"I just want to be in a good environment where I can relate with the coaches. The depth chart will not be important to me because I know there will be great players at my position no matter where I go. Competition only makes you better. I do not shy away from it."

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