When last we heard from Nu’Keese Richardson, he had dropped down from the FBS level to the JUCO ranks in an attempt to restart what was at one time a promising playing career.
Well over two years later, Richardson has tumbled even further down the football food chain.
Jason Lieser of the Palm Beach Post writes that “Richardson is enrolled at the University of Pikeville… and plans to go through spring football in April.” The Kentucky school plays football at the National Association of Collegiate Athletics (NAIA) level.
“He just got here a couple weeks ago, and we’re glad we got him,” Pikeville receivers coach Justin Lamb told Lieser. “We have a coach from Florida, so he knew Nu’Keese and knew he was a great athlete. Once he realized he had nowhere to go, we got him here. We think he’s a great addition.”
The NAIA step is latest twist in the up-and-down (mostly down) career of Richardson.
A four-star member of Tennessee’s 2009 recruiting class and rated as one of the top receivers in the country, Richardson lasted less than one season with the Vols as he was dismissed by then-head coach Lane Kiffin following an arrest for attempted armed robbery. He moved on to Hampton University in Virginia and participated in spring practice in 2010, but shortly thereafter he abruptly left the school — without telling his coaches.
Later that same year, he enrolled at Coffeyville (Kan.) Community College, but left that school after one semester.
While there were reports in January of 2011 that schools such as Kansas and Syracuse were interested, Richardson has essentially been off the football grid for nearly three years. He had also been expected to enroll at Palm Beach State College in an attempt to earn an associate degree, although it’s unclear if he ever took that step.
According to Lieser, Richardson stated last year that he “was finished with athletics and hoped to move into the workforce.”