Keith Jackson NSD

Ridge Point High School running back Keith Jackson signs his letter of intent with the University of North Texas Wednesday. He was one of four Panthers to sign. (Photo from Ridge Point Twitter)

Even though it comes amidst a pandemic, Wednesday was still the celebration of the beginning of a new chapter for a number of the area’s high school athletes who will continue their athletic careers at the college level.

Ahead of area-round playoff games this weekend, the Ridge Point Panthers had four football players sign. The Travis Tigers had two signees, as did the Marshall Buffalos. Following their bi-district win, the Hightower Hurricanes also had a high-profile receiver sign.

Leading the way for Ridge Point was receiver John Paul Richardson, who signed with Oklahoma State. Richardson has amassed more than 2,100 receiving yards and 20 touchdowns in four high school seasons. Running back Keith Jackson, who has 812 yards and 11 touchdowns this season, will continue his playing career at the University of North Texas.

Offensive tackle Cameron Plummer will be a Bearkat at Sam Houston State, while defensive lineman Jimmy Guy signed to play at Houston Baptist University.

Travis defensive back Cameron Oliver, who had 64 tackles and 17 interceptions in four seasons, was one of two Tigers to sign. He is headed to UNLV. Offensive lineman Ryder Wall will join Ridge Point’s Plummer at Sam Houston State next fall.

Two standouts for Marshall’s stingy defense also inked letters of intent Wednesday. Linebacker Kenny Seymour (282 career tackles, 7 sacks) will stay close to home at Rice University, while safety Christian Jackson (95 tackles, 7 interceptions) signed to play at Incarnate Word in San Antonio.

Hightower receiver Latrelle Neville, who has more than 450 receiving yards in parts of two seasons, signed with Nebraska.

On the private school circuit, Fort Bend Christian Academy offensive lineman Remington Strickland and receiver David Kasemervisz also signed with big-time programs. Strickland will play at Texas A&M, while Kasemervisz will be at Stanford.

Austin volleyball player Kiara Liedy signed to play at Centenary College, while Bulldogs baseball player Ryan Branch will play at Murray State College

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