Ole Miss On Top For Florida RB

2015 Niceville (Fla.) running back, Shi'kim Coward, has numerous offers from various programs throughout the country, including the instate South Florida Bulls. USFNation.com caught up with the accomplished running back for the latest with his recruitment and his upcoming visit plans.

Possessing a stocky build at 5-foot-8, 185-pounds, 2015 Niceville (Fla.) High running back, Shi'kim Coward, has been wrestling a hamstring injury for the initial part of the 2013 season.

"I've missed a game and a half due to hamstring problems, but I'll be back this Friday," Coward said. "In the first game, I rushed for 204 yards on 16 carries and a touchdown. I played in the first quarter of the second game and had two touchdowns and 70 yards also."

For recruiting, things have been steadily picking up for the Niceville running back.

"Everything's been starting to speed up," Coward said. "I've been talking to Ole Miss a lot, Arkansas, Notre Dame, Florida, Tennessee, South Florida of course, East Carolina and that's about it right now."

With vast interest from a handful of those programs, Coward has received offers from South Florida, Georgia Tech, East Carolina, FAU, Middle Tennessee and believes others will follow shortly.

"Ole Miss is going to offer me real soon," Coward said. "Florida could possibly offer me as well."

As for the instate South Florida Bulls, Coward has family in the Tampa Bay area and enjoyed his previous visit to Willie Taggart's program over the summer.

"I like the whole atmosphere at USF," Coward said. "Tyre McCants and I went down there in the summer and loved the visit. They showed us love and I like all the coaches down there. It's a great environment and I have family down there. I kind of loved that. They're really high on education and I like that too."

As for a leader, there's a certain SEC school that's ahead in the race for Coward's services.

"Right now, my leader is Ole Miss," Coward said.

On top of his busy high school schedule, Coward will be on the road this fall visiting several college programs in the upcoming weeks.

"I'm going to Ole Miss next week," Coward said. "I know I'll be going to the Florida - Florida State game. I'm going to try and go to a Georgia Tech game and I know for sure I'll be trying to go to the Miami - South Florida game."

A trio of factors will come into play when Coward and his family sit down and come to a conclusion on where he'll be playing college football.

"The atmosphere, the relationship with the coaches and the offense they run will come into play," Coward said. "Plus, my mom has to play a big role in it. Of course she has to be coming to my games. Those are the main things I'm looking at and distance won't be a factor."

As for a decision timetable, Coward could end his recruitment before his senior year.

"I always tell myself that I'm going to commit after the season in early spring, but I don't know," Coward said. "Maybe I'll wait until senior year to see what other offers I get. There's no telling, you never know. We'll see."

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