GUYTON — Rocko Griffin has never doubted his ability to play football at the Division I level.
Griffin grew up a Florida fan but his college loyalty now rests with Vanderbilt, the school to which he is verbally committed.
“Growing up I always saw myself playing in the SEC,” Griffin said. “I feel like I always knew all my life. I feel like I have accomplished that milestone.”
Griffin, whose first name is William, entertained offers from Louisville, Virginia, Southern Miss, Georgia Southern and East Carolina. His first offer came from Louisville and from there the letters started pouring in.
The scales tipped in Vanderbilt’s favor.
“(Vanderbilt) has so many attributes other schools can’t offer,” Griffin said. “Your life after football means something. A degree from that school is going to pave the way.”
Griffin grew up in Effingham County and said the transition to his new home has been a smooth one. He used to attend Calvary Day School in Savannah.
“Being able to drive 15 minutes to school versus driving an hour and getting up at 5:30 (a.m. is nice,” Griffin said.
Many running backs worry about how frequently they score and Griffin is no different.
“I try to aim for two every game,” he said. “Truthfully, I just want to win but scoring two a game will help with that.”
With South Effingham off to a 4-0 start, Griffin knows there is a bull’s-eye on its back. He said each game on the schedule is equally important now.
Still, he got extra satisfaction from beating Jenkins and Effingham County. Topping Region 2-AAAAA foe New Hampstead is a big goal, too.
“I’ve been to the past three (meetings between South Effingham and Effingham County),” Griffin said. “Having some family on the other side, you get bragging rights more than anything. To play in that game was a blessing.
“We are a target now. We can put a star by every game in the schedule.”
Griffin still gets a ton of mail. He flashed a screenshot of envelopes from Vanderbilt, which continues to show him love to keep his interest. He said he’s completely locked into the Commodores and can’t wait to start SEC play.
In the meantime, Griffin will strive to help the Mustangs become the best team they can be.
‘I want to make an impact in the school not just with football but with the students and teachers,” he said.