Herzel Glashen isn't like most college football players in that he has only been playing organized football for a very short time.
"I only played one year of football in high school. This is actually my third year of football. I was defensive MVP my senior year of high school with about 90 tackles, 15 pass breakups, and 7 sacks. I'm from the Islands down near Jamaica and Haiti, so I transferred in from being home-schooled."
Glashen played his only year of high school football at perennial strength Boyd-Anderson in Lauderdale Lakes, Florida. Yet somehow he slipped through the cracks and for the most part went unnoticed.
"I sent my highlights out to schools on and after signing day because I didn't know how the system worked. I only sent my film to Jackson State where my cousin goes. A lot of people were saying 'why didn't you go D1?'"
Thus Glashen landed at El Camino Community College in El Camino, California. But rather than a setback, Herzel sees it as an opportunity.
"I know a lot of Florida guys come to El Camino and they play against a lot of good competition. I needed a good DB coach and El Camino was a good place for me. Plus the offense is good too so it's good competition. It was really a learning process for me getting out here and playing both corner and safety."
Glashen was a solid prospect coming out of high school, but his time at El Camino has helped him solidify his game, which he believes possesses many very good attributes.
"I'm fast and I'm aggressive. Whoever touches the ball is going to feel something because I'm going to hit them hard. I run in the 4.3 and 4.4 range. I'm a track star and I was one of the top hurdlers in the nation coming out of high school. I like to work out a lot."
But being a track star and a gym rat always pushes Glashen to better his game as well.
"I want to work on my ball skills and tackling and the fundamentals."
Despite an obviously strong skill set and inherent athletic ability, Glashen still feels like he could get more credit than he currently does, which is something he does not mind at all.
"I'm just an underrated guy right now. That's the best part about it. There isn't any one thing. I like being the underrated guy because receivers don't know me yet. I just want to leave it all on the field."
Herzel knows there is more to college than just football, and that fact is figuring into his recruitment significantly.
"I want a great education and a great place for football. My main goal is to be a pastor when I'm done. I'm just playing the sport for now, but I want to find a good program."
Colleges are beginning to recognize his talents though, and one of the schools that has come calling for Glashen is Illinois, namely coach Dan Disch, who has strong ties to Florida.
"Disch feels like a coach I can trust. He knows talent when he sees it. I talked to him, and he told me he'd like to get me up there this summer."
Glashen is still weighing things out, with schools like Utah State, Central Michigan, Rutgers, and Cincinnati also calling.
"Right now I'm open to everyone. Illinois was my first offer but I don't have a top at the moment."
Herzel is aware of some of the talent that has passed through Illinois at defensive back, namely 2009 first round draft pick Vontae Davis. He also thinks highly of new coach Vic Koenning and his philosophies on defense.
"I think I'd fit in perfect. I know about Vontae Davis so that (Illinois) could be a good fit for me. I can cover in man coverage 24/7."
Aside from his intended visit to Illinois this summer, Glashen says he plans to visit a couple other schools as well.
"I haven't taken any yet. I was supposed to go to Utah St. last year but I didn't go. I'll probably take about 3 visits this summer."
The timetable for recruiting for many junior college players is different than a typical high school athlete, but Glashen already knows when he'd like to announce.
"I'll probably announce during the Junior College All-American game so probably around that time."