Toriano Pride’s List of Scholarship Offers Speaks to His Pedigree
It was more than a year since Toriano Pride participated in a 7-on-7 football tournament. A junior two-way standout for the Lutheran North football team, Pride showed up at the NFA 7v7 tournament in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, this weekend hoping to show all who came what he believes in his heart.
“I feel I’m the No. 1 (defensive back) in my class,” Pride said.
By Sunday night, Pride had a new swath of believers. The 5-foot-11 and 185-pound Pride put together a spectacular two-day showing where he allowed one opponent to catch a single pass on him and even that one was a short, quick route to the sideline.
If there was any rust from his lengthy 7-on-7 layoff, he didn’t show it.
“It felt natural,” Pride said. “It’s really one on one all day, every rep for me.”
Pride was so good he was tabbed the tournament’s “Alpha Dog” by 247sports recruiting expert Steve Wiltfong. That is no small tip of the cap considering the tournament field was loaded with some of the top-ranked college prospects in the country.
Then again, Pride feels he fits right in with that crowd.
“He is the best corner in the country,” Lutheran North coach Carl Reed said.
Pride’s list of scholarship offers speaks to his pedigree. He’s one of a handful of locals to catch Clemson’s eye. There’s also Alabama, Florida State, Ohio State, Oregon, Oklahoma, Notre Dame and Texas A&M, as well as Missouri and Illinois mixed in to his nearly 30 offers.
Because of the NCAA extending the in-person recruiting dead period through May 31, Pride and other potential recruits can’t take official visits, but they can drop by and explore on their own. Pride has family in South Carolina not far from Clemson and got a lay of the land.
Pride said he would like to get in more visits if possible when he can as he wades into his recruiting process. His plan at this point is not trim his lengthy list of offers but instead figure out where he’d like to go and then verbally commit at some point in August. That way he can have it put to bed before focusing on his senior year and chasing a third state championship ring.
Pride was a freshman on Vianney’s 2018 Class 5 title team and then won his second when Lutheran North claimed the Class 2 title in 2019.
Finding his college home might grow significantly more difficult after his performance this weekend. Pride was already popular among some of the most recognized college football programs in the country, but he said he’s already starting to see an uptick of interest.
“It’s blown up a little more,” he said.
As for where he’d like to play, that doesn’t matter to him as much as being part of a program that’s a good fit for him. At Lutheran North, Pride rushed the ball out of the backfield, caught passes and was dynamic in the defensive secondary.
“I’ll go wherever you put me as long as I’m helping the team win,” Pride said. “It doesn’t matter to me.”