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July 2, 2010On Thursday, St. Peter's Prep running back Savon Huggins narrowed his extensive list of scholarship offers down to ten. Shortly thereafter, Long Branch athlete Miles Shuler did the same. Together, they are going through the recruiting process as more than just two of the state's top athletes. They are going through it as friends.
"Savon is one of my best friends," said Shuler. "We talk all the time and that's what makes it even more great."
Being able to share the experience as one of the country's more sought-after recruits also has it's share of benefits.
"It does help to have someone else to talk to and it's always good to take a trip with someone else," said Huggins. "My dad knows his dad and we talk almost every day. Me, him and Charles [Davis] are real cool."
Both Shuler and Huggins have received offers from some of the top programs in the nation. The pair has also visited schools together, but they began attending the same camps and combines long before each of their respective recruitments started to soar.
However, football doesn't dominate the conversations between the two.
"We talk all the time, sometimes we just talk about life," said Huggins. "It's not just about football, but about everything."
Huggins was the first of the two to trim his long list of offers. And similar to the way each of their recruitments have taken on a similar course, Shuler followed suit.
"Right now, I got big decisions to make," said Shuler. "It's going to be interesting in the future, but it's a great experience right now."
In their numerous conversations and many recent visits, another topic has also come to the surface. There is a possibility that Shuler and Huggins could wind up choosing the same college.
"We've been talking about it," said Shuler. "We don't know, but we both understand that we're going to the school that's best for us. The bottom line is anything can happen, so we'll see what happens."
Huggins offered his take on ending up at the same college as his friend.
"It is a possibility. I can't say if that's going to be true. At the end of the day, it's where each and every one of our hearts are."
When Shuler and Huggins finally do choose a school, it will be a monumental time for each of those top athletes. Those destinations may be in different places, although both have already benefited from walking down the same path.
But it may be more than just that their skills on the football field that has enabled Huggins and Shuler to share this journey.
"We're both leaders on and off the field," said Huggins. "I think that's what separates us from different players because we have a lot of intangibles in common."
Check out Bobby Deren's book on the NFL Draft entitled DRAFT SEASON: Four months on the clock.
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