There is likely a quicker way of summing up the last few days for Tate Ratledge without involving a Patrick Swayze comparison, an Instagram group chat or a startling bike accident.
Yet this is what we do here sometimes in this space.
His camp day makes one think he might get a rating bump. But of all those things, none of those really stand out.
- The fact he punts for his high school stands out. He delivered a 39-yard net for Darlington last fall. (Maybe Smart might be taking this roster efficiency thing with the 2020 class a little far. Of course, I jest. Kinda.)
- The fact Ratledge likes to talk more about his high school battles than his recruiting stands out. This kid doesn’t really get caught up in the hype, it seems.
- Maybe the biggest standout is that Ratledge grew into an even bigger standout of late.
There is no reason for this, but somehow Ratledge has grown at least 1-to-1.5 inches since the summer of his junior year.
4-star OT Tate Ratledge had a great showing on Sunday at the Atlanta Opening regional. (Jeff Sentell/DawgNation)
Do you realize how many players hope and pray to get bigger to attract more college interest? Somehow and way Ratledge has found a way to super-size himself up from the March 2018 version of himself.
The young man already had Alabama and Georgia and everyone else offers when he was still south of the 6-foot-6 mark. But he showed at the Opening and measured in at 6 feet, 7 inches. He is now 311 pounds.
Those tidbits all pop the mitt here with Ratledge, but maybe not as much as a “road hog” story shared on Sunday by his father.
RELATED: Get to know Darlington High’s Tate Ratledge
Tate Ratledge: “You couldn’t tell him not to try it”
“He was always adventuresome,” his father Dean Ratledge said. “I don’t care what it was but you couldn’t tell him not to try it. Do you know what I am talking about?
There was this one time when Dean tried to teach his young son how to ride a bicycle. That’s a time-honored memory for any American family.
“So we are out in the cul de sac and he’s riding around and says ‘I think I can do this by myself” after just a few trips,” his father said.
Tate Ratledge shared the name of an interesting Instagram group message thread with DawgNation. (Jeff Sentell/DawgNation)
Tate was five. He may have even been four years of age.