Almost from the start, LeCounte was an aspiring star as a rookie at Liberty County High School in Hinesville, Georgia.
“Richard was a freshman and he caught two one-handed interceptions in front of Florida coach DJ Durkin,” New England Patriots linebacker Raekwon McMillan (and former Liberty star) recalled. “Durkin said he was the best freshman he’s ever seen in his life.”
“He was head and shoulders above the rest of his age athletically and mentally on the court,” said McMillan.
During his time at Liberty, LeCounte excelled on the grill, hardwood and athletics.
In 2015-16 alone, he helped the Panthers reach the GHSA AAAA Class State Title game in basketball.
LeCounte’s team defeated Jonesboro High School and the Panthers won their first championship, finishing with an outstanding 28-1 record.
A few months later, LeCounte competed in the high jump and achieved 6’4 ”.
Later that year, the Panthers reached the second round of the state playoffs in football and finished 8-4.
LeCounte’s numbers for the 2016 football season were 100 total tackles, four forced fumbles, four fumble recoveries, two picks and two defensive touchdowns.
He also played on offense and added 25 receptions for 564 yards, four touchdowns, 865 rushing yards and seven other touchdowns, and even threw for 506 yards and six casual-duty touchdown passes in the quarterback.
“It seems like every tackle I was saying ‘tackle from Richard Lecounte. Tackle assisted by Richard LeCounte, ”said Derrick Mitchell, who was the public announcer for some of LeCounte’s games. “I called her name so much that I was looking for someone else’s name to call.
Prior to the start of last season, LeCounte was on the preseason watchlists for the Bednarik Award (Collegiate Defensive Player of the Year), the Jim Thorpe Award (best DB in the country) and the Bronko Nagurski Trophy (best player defense of the country).
3. Traffic accident almost ends LeCounte’s football career and life
LeCounte has exceeded expectations in the first five games of the 2020 season.
At that time, he had 26 total tackles, three interceptions and four breakouts.
Then it all fell apart (literally) on Halloween.
While riding an off-road motorcycle, he was struck by a vehicle making a left turn.
After the collision, LeCounte and his bicycle were thrown into oncoming traffic where he was struck by another vehicle.
In the process, LeCounte suffered cuts, bruises and a shoulder injury.
Although none of his injuries required surgery, things could have been much worse.
“He’s lucky to be alive,” said his mother, Erika Blocker-LeCounte. “He was wearing his helmet and [that] saved his life.
LeCounte returned for the Bulldogs’ Peach Bowl game against Cincinnati.
He stayed on the sidelines for most of the contest until Smart sent him in for the match’s final game.
Remarkably, LeCounte’s limited stats in 2020 have always led to a nod from the All SEC first-team.
LeCounte is expected to be perfectly healthy and ready for the 2021 Browns season.
Richard LeCounte says NFL teams are questioning him about the off-road motorcycle accident and he tells them what happened.
Overall he feels great physically and feels like he performed well at Pro Day, but he still believes there is room for improvement. pic.twitter.com/tqUT37Fmd3