After falling short of qualifying to play major college football at the end of his senior year of high school, East Mississippi Community College (Scooba, Miss.) safety Shaquille Fluker is determined to reach that level in December.
As a matter of fact, there isn't much he won't do to get there.
"Right now, my main focus is studying hard and getting all my classes in," said Fluker. "I'm going to graduate in December. I don't care what I have to do. I'll stay up all night studying or whatever. It doesn't matter."
At this point it appears that Fluker has a nice list of schools he can choose from once he graduates from EMCC.
"I have offers from Georgia, Kansas, Kentucky, and Nebraska," he added. "I also hear a lot from other schools like Texas Tech and Arkansas, but no offer yet."
Fluker has compiled a solid list of potential suitors at this time, but his most recent offer came from Georgia and that is the offer that stands out the most for the JUCO standout.
"That offer from Georgia was kind of crazy," said Fluker. "I visited them and talked with the coaches and all. Then before I left Coach (Todd) Grantham, the defensive coordinator, told me he liked my physical play and appearance and said he wanted to offer me a scholarship. I wasn't shocked that they offered, but I didn't think they would do it until I left. When they offered, I was thinking 'man, I could be playing here next year.' It was different from the rest."
Since the Bulldogs offered Fluker, they have been in regular contact and he has built a solid relationship with UGA defensive backs coach Scott Lakatos.
"I talk to Coach Lakatos mainly," said Fluker. "On my visit we talked football and he broke things down for me and made it sound very simple. I learned a lot just talking from him about what they do. He seems like a really good coach and can teach football."
After admitting that the offer stood out from his other offers, and talking about his relationship with Coach Lakatos, Fluker went ahead and stated where the Bulldogs stand in his recruitment.
Georgia fans will undoubtedly like the answer.
"Georgia is the top team for me," said Fluker. "They are my leader, and I'm really happy with that offer. They are a great program with a lot of good things going, and I told my mom and my coaches that I didn't want to make a snap decision, but it was tough."
The 6-foot-1, 205-pound prospect finished his first season for the Lions with 72 total tackles, two sacks, and two tackles for a loss, and two interceptions.
Those numbers reflect exactly where Fluker believes he is the strongest as a player.
"I feel like I am a physical player that loves to hit and tackle," said Fluker. "When I'm back there, I feel like I see the game good and want to come up and make the play. I like to take the play to the ball carrier and not the other way around."
So if the ball is in the air, would Fluker be the type to go for the big hit, or the interception?
According to the EMCC standout, it all depends on the situation.
"Most of the time, I'm going to go for the big hit because that is where I feel comfortable," said Fluker. "I know that can change the game, but if we are in a situation where we need the ball back, I know I'll need to go for the ball."
With a few big time programs already pursuing him, and other programs close to offering, Fluker, who admits he has already come close to making a decision one time, believes he will decide sometime in the near future.
"Like I said, I talked to my mom and my coaches and all, and I told them I didn't want to rush into anything," said Fluker. "I've had some time to think about stuff and talk it over, so I will probably decide at the end of the summer."
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