Shumate Talks Rutgers, Eyes Decision Date

PISCATAWAY, N.J. -- Don Bosco Prep (Ramsey, N.J.) four-star safety Elijah Shumate is one of Rutgers' top targets in the 2011 class. After competing in the Nike camp Sunday at Rutgers Stadium, Shumate updated his recruitment. He talked about what he likes in the Scarlet Knights, who is "probably the best recruiter in the country," and when he plans on making a decision.

PISCATAWAY, N.J. – Four-star safety Elijah Shumate wanted to attend Rutgers' spring game, but running the Penn Relays took precedent.

He left Franklin Field with hardware from a pair of events, and was at Rutgers on Sunday to participate in the Nike camp. Afterward,'s No. 7-ranked safety in the class said Rutgers and South Carolina continued to stand out, mostly because those are two schools he knows the most about.

"Rutgers is a great school," Shumate said. "They are actually recruiting me the hardest out of all the coaches. I love (defensive backs) coach (Jeff) Hafley. Coach Hafley is probably the best recruiter in the country."

Shumate explained why he connects so well with Hafley.

"Coach Hafley shows you love," Shumate said. "Coach Hafley really brings you in and you can tell he is a man of his word. His players, when you see his practices, they love him. After practice they come to his (office) and sit down and watch film and you can talk to him about anything.

"He's just a great person as well as a great coach. …He's that good."

The 6-foot-1, 205-pound Shumate also is considering his timing for an announcement, and it looks like it could be Jan. 7, 2012, when he is in San Antonio, Texas.

"I'm thinking about deciding during the U.S. Army (all-America) game," Shumate said. "But if I fall in love with some other school, I just might commit early."

On Saturday, Shumate was part of the second-place team in the 4 X 100 and part of a team that won a heat in the 4 X 400 at the Penn Relays.

"There was a huge crowd," he said. "It was great because I like to play in front of huge crowds. I'm a big-play type of person, so I like to be in big areas and I like to impress the crowd."

The next day he headed to the Nike camp, where he was one of the top targets for receivers during 1-on-1 drills at the Nike camp.

And that was exactly what he wanted.

"I love it because I work so hard," he said. "The hard work is paying off. I love to be that guy that they're coming after. I want them to remember me.

"I get to see the top players in the area. I love it. I get to see my competition, meet new guys, meet a lot of friends."

Shumate said in the summer he plans to visit a number of schools, including South Carolina, North Carolina and Notre Dame.

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