When offer No. 1 came Monday for Homerville (Ga.) Clinch County junior athlete Fred Tiller, he actually was caught a bit off guard.
"I really didn't think I was going to get it this soon," Tiller said. "I thought I'd get it when I went to camps over the summer."
Thanks to Mississippi State, which was the first to pull the trigger, the 6-foot-1, 178-pound Tiller didn't have to wait that long.
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"I started hearing from them like a couple weeks ago," Tiller said. "[Mississippi State assistant John Hevesy] and his staff just looked over my film. They really liked it. They were really impressed and wanted me to be a Bulldog."
What does Tiller know about Mississippi State?
"Nothing right now," he admitted. "But I'm going to start looking them up. They want me to come up, so I probably will [visit]."
Tiller also is hearing from a handful of other programs, notably Georgia Tech, Louisville and South Florida
"My coach was just on the phone with coaches from Louisville and USF," Tiller said. "He said they might offer, too."
During Clinch County's 15-0 2010 season, Tiller shined on both sides of the ball. At receiver, the two-year starter recorded 31 catches for 736 yards and nine touchdowns. Playing safety, he made 65 tackles and intercepted five passes, one of which was returned 100 yards for a touchdown.
Next up for Tiller is a trip to Georgia Tech on April 23.
On Monday, though, he wasn't thinking about visits; he was thinking about his very first offer and what it meant.
"It's a big relief," Tiller said. "My coach said, 'Once you get that first offer, they'll all start coming.' It feels pretty good right now."