Tallahassee (Fla.) Godby safety De’Shawn Rucker, a four-star prospect per ESPN, owns more than a dozen Power Five scholarship offers and is communicating regularly with coaches from the schools on his offer list.
Clemson offered Rucker in mid-February, and he has been in contact with multiple members of the coaching staff since he visited campus for the first time March 7 to attend the program’s junior day function.
“After the visit, they said they hope I had a great time at Clemson, can’t wait to get me back up there, and just basically really checking up on me, seeing how I am and my family during this time.”
Rucker (5-11, 170) is building a strong relationship with safeties coach Mickey Conn, defensive coordinator Brent Venables and defensive tackles coach Todd Bates.
“I talk with them at least every other day,” Rucker said. “Coach Conn, he’s a pretty cool guy. He usually checks up on me, just saying ‘have a great day’ or ‘good morning’, stuff like that. Coach Bates, he’s the poet of the group. He sends a lot of poetry to me and my mom. We have a group chat together. I talk to Coach Venables also. He just talks to me, sends me stats throughout Clemson and stuff like that to let me know their stats and things like that.”
Rucker also visited Florida State in early March and had planned to visit Florida before the NCAA stepped in on March 13 and suspended all on- and off-campus recruiting through at least April 15 because of the coronavirus.
According to Rucker, he doesn’t have any specific schools in mind that he is intent on checking out after the dead period ends, whenever that may be.
“Not really like schools I’d be like, ‘I need to visit here,’” he said. “There’s a lot of schools I could visit, but once this whole thing airs out, I’ll just see my options and go from there.”
Besides Clemson, Rucker’s offer list features schools such as Alabama, Auburn, Florida, Florida State, LSU, Oklahoma and Tennessee.
Rucker was hoping to commit before his senior season but is uncertain now whether he will be able to render a decision by then.
“My goal was this summer,” he said. “I want to have a clean senior year to enjoy it with my team. I wanted to be committed in the summer, but again, with this whole corona thing, I’m not really sure what I’m going to do.”
All Rucker can do right now is continue talking with coaches, and there are a bunch of them recruiting him hard right now.
“Most schools that offered me are really pushing,” he said. “I have a lot of coaches texting me from each school and they’re pushing me to see when I can get back on campus after this whole thing’s over.”
While Rucker isn’t claiming any favorites in his recruitment at this time, he is certainly high on Clemson.
“I mean, I really like Clemson,” he said. “It’s a great school. Going up there, it was a great time to see what they have to offer to me. We got to meet the president, so he told us the top accolades of the school, not even just in football but academically also. So, it was a pretty good chance getting up there and things like that.”
Clemson’s head coach made an impression on Rucker when he was on campus earlier this month.
“I’d say when Coach Dabo Swinney had his meeting with us, just seeing how he built the program from the standpoint when he got there,” Rucker said of what stood out about the visit. “He’s been there for a good amount of years, so seeing where he started and where he is now, it was pretty good.”
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