Athlete Shorts Talks Recruiting, Rutgers Trip

Eastern Christian (Elkton, Md.) athlete Daikiel Shorts has his first verbal scholarship offer locked up and is honing in on a few more. At Rutgers Saturday for the team's scrimmage, Shorts discussed his experience at High Point Solutions Stadium and his relationship with cousin Tiquan Underwood.

As an aspiring Division I athlete, Daikiel Shorts of Eastern Christian (Elkton, Md.) has a top-notch role model and mentor in New England Patriots wide receiver Tiquan Underwood.

Underwood, a three-year starter at Rutgers, traveled with his cousin Shorts Saturday to a spring scrimmage at his alma mater.

Shorts, who holds a Temple offer, enjoyed his trip to Rutgers and hopes to hear more from the Scarlet Knights when the spring evaluation period kicks off.

"It was a good time," Shorts said. "I didn't get to talk to a lot of coaches because I had to leave after, but I liked watching the scrimmage. Recruiting is going well for me."

Shorts has been familiar with Rutgers since watching Underwood star in Piscataway for four seasons. Despite incredible performances since Underwood left by stars like Kenny Britt, Mohamed Sanu and Tim Brown, the New Brunswick, N.J., native holds the school record for most receiving yards in a game -- 248 against Buffalo to open the 2007 season.

"He helps me out with everything," Shorts said on Underwood. "He keeps me working and tells me it will all come together. He's a great role model. ... He tells me he really loved Rutgers and liked the coaches there. Everything went well for him.

The 6-foot-1 receiver visited Temple yesterday, his first verbal offer, and he has solid communication with Rutgers, Penn State and Maryland. Shorts visited Temple this week and expects to hit multiple schools in the Northeast, including Rutgers and Maryland, with his team during the summer.

Shorts plays on both sides of the ball for his high-school squad and remains unsure of his projected college position.

"I would probably prefer to play receiver, but I think if a school wanted me to play DB, that would be fine," he said. "I actually asked the Temple coaches what they wanted me at, and they just told me athlete for now."

Before transferring to Eastern Christian, Shorts was a part of the Red Lion (Bear, Del.) team that won the 7-on-7 Schiano Shootout last year. With many of them now at Eastern Christian, they expect to return to Rutgers this summer.

"[Saturday] was actually my first time back there since the summer," Shorts said. "The stadium and facilities are some of the best in the country, I believe. It's really impressive.

Shorts is high-school teammates with running back Wendell Smallwood and cornerback Jahmere Irvin-Sills, who both have Rutgers offers and USC commits Kenny Bigelow and David Sills.

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