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May 16, 2006

Florida DE has speed to burn

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Hollywood (Fla.) defensive end Jabaal Sheard is one of the fastest big athletes in the Sunshine State this year, having been clocked at 4.6 seconds in the 40-yard dash at 6-foot-4, 240-pounds at the Miami NIKE Camp this spring. Teams have taken notice, and he recently picked up his first scholarship offer.

"South Carolina offered me last week," Sheard said. "Coach (Robert) Gillespie came by the school and offered. I also talked to their defensive line coach (Brad Lawing) on the phone. He was saying they need defensive ends, so that sounded pretty good. I'm going to major in criminal justice, and they have that major. I want to get up there this summer to see what the environment is like."

Georgia and UCF also rate highly on Sheard's list.

"Georgia has a good program, and it's close to Florida. I like the weather here in Florida, and it's pretty much the same in Georgia. UCF is real close to home, and they're getting in contact with me a whole lot. Their facilities are going to be nice, too."

Miami and Florida are currently at the top of his list.

"I like UM and Florida a lot. I'm hoping one of them will offer me a scholarship, but we'll see. I'd say those are my top two teams."

Sheard, who bench presses 345 pounds, believes he brings several strengths to the table as a player.

"I don't want to say too much, but I feel like I bring a lot of speed and quickness to the position and a lot of agility. I also have the strength the move the offensive lineman around so I can play the run and the pass."

While Sheard, who was timed in the short shuttle at 4.25 seconds, is in no hurry to make a decision, he does know what he's looking for in a school.

"I want to know they will look out for me if I get in injured or something like that. I'll also look at the climate and just the overall coaching staff. I'm going to wait it out to see what all my options are before I do anything."

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