Christmas came early to the Sherman household Tuesday evening, but Santa Claus came not through a chimney. Rather, he was transmitted through a phone line.
"Coach [Nate] Hackett called last night and told me that I was admitted to Stanford," Richard Sherman reports. "I was ecstatic. I was excited. It was great news. My mom and dad were running around the house screaming."
The Compton (Calif.) Dominguez High School senior has held the Cardinal at or near the top of his favorites list since his unofficial to The Farm in May. He has been back a couple times since on additional visits, with his fondness growing for the school and the people. But coming from the Compton Unified School District without the benefits - inside or outside the classroom - that most Stanford hopefuls have at their disposal, Sherman should have been a longshot to receive good news from the Cardinal in last night's fateful phone call.
"I did all I could - kept my grades up, studied for the SAT, wrote my best essays," Sherman shares. "It's nice to know that all the hard work I put into this paid off."
The shouts and tears of celebration from his parents echoed the sentiment.
"It meant a tremendous amount to my mom and dad," the proud son explains. "They realized that all the hard word they put into me paid off. All the discipline they gave to keep me in class and keep me on the right track. Everything they taught me and tried to instill into me. That is why I have the chance to go to one of the greatest institutions in the world."
With all this Stanford celebration, did Sherman deliver a commitment to the Cardinal during that phone call with Hackett, Walt Harris and Wayne Moses?
"I'm still going to take my trips and go through the whole recruiting process before I made my decision," the recruit reveals. "I'm going to visit [Stanford] on January 13. I'll visit Washington on January 6."
Sherman says there are still some areas of The Farm he wants to explore next month.
"I've been around the campus, but I haven't really been inside all the facilities - the dorms and the classrooms," he explains.
Disappointed Stanford fans and coaches can take solace in his elevated opinion on the Cardinal, in the wake of his admissions acceptance.
"Their chances are very, very, very good."
While many recruits around the country are taking official visits this weekend, Sherman has to hold off while he plays one more game with the Dominguez Dons. They face Sherman Oaks (Calif.) Notre Dame on Saturday in the CIF Southern Section Division III championship.
"This is the championship game. It means a lot," offers Sherman, who has 28 catches for 859 yards and 14 touchdowns this year. "I have to lock up one of their good receivers and make sure to slow down their passing offense. When I'm on offense, I have to make sure I catch the ball when my team needs a big play."
Regardless of the outcome on Saturday, Richard Sherman scored big this week with his admission to The Farm. For that, the Sherman family is already dancing in the endzone.
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