Last Updated: Thursday, January 05, 2017, 2:15 PM EST
Artavis Scott never won a Florida high school state title while playing at East Lake.
He came close, finishing his senior year 13-1 in the state semifinals against Dwyer.
Now, the Clemson junior wide receiver will try for a national title just 20 minutes from those prep pigskin days as an Eagle.
To Clemson, he is Artavis Scott, the program’s all-time receptions leader. Following the Fiesta Bowl vs. Ohio State he currently has 242 and counting.
To his alma mater and the "Blue Crue", he is "Tay.”
A four year varsity starter, turning heads since day one.
“As a true freshman, kick-off classic against Land ‘O Lakes, his very first touch,” said head East Lake coach Bob Hudson, who coach Scott in high school. “We received the kickoff and he ran it back for a touchdown.”
He has top tier coaching at Clemson in Dabo Sweeney, but when he needs football 101 Hudson is just a phone call away.
“We still talk a lot,” said Hudson. “We were texting last night. It’s more stick your foot in the ground and go.”
“That’s what I told him last night. Athletes like that every time they touch the ball they want to make big impact plays, but sometimes the biggest impact plays is when you stick your foot and go and the speed of your play in that will break tackles.”
Along with school records at Clemson, Scott earned his degree in just six semesters. He is the ultimate example of student-athlete.
“When he decided to take academics serious too, and really grow up academically, you could really see that turning and then he continues it on up there," said Hudson. "I’m very proud of him.”
Scott returns to his stomping grounds frequently. He works with current East Lake players and talks to them about life lessons.
“He comes back and helps (with) anything we need here, whether it’s receiver stuff or off the field stuff,” said Hudson. “My defensive line coach for 14 years, Todd Brooks, is the head coach at Dunedin. He went over to spoke to Dunedin’s kid for Todd. That speaks a lot about him.”
With his intent to declare for the NFL out in the open, the National Champion game could book end Scott's amateur career in the Bay Area, in front a rooting section that will always cheer him on as Tay.
Clemson (13-1) will face Alabama (14-0) Monday January 9th at Raymond James Stadium. Kick-off is at 8 p.m.