Put on the spot and asked to describe his off-the-field hobbies moments after learning Seattle had used the 2017 draft’s No. 90 overall pick to make him a member of the Seahawks, not much came to Shaquill Griffin’s mind.
“The only thing I can think of right now is I go bowling a lot,” Griffin said. “I definitely like bowling.”
But for the Central Florida cornerback there’s much more to it than strikes, turkeys, and spares when it comes to activities he enjoys outside of football.
“Besides that, I’m always coaching my track team,” Griffin said. “That’s the biggest thing I do.”
Along with his twin brother Shaquem, Griffin, now age 21, started a youth track club — St. Pete Nitro — when he just 15 years old in St. Petersburg, Florida. Griffin, who started running track at age seven and continued with the sport in high school, didn’t run track in college but instead would “live through the kids on the track team since I don’t run anymore.”
“I have been coaching them and while I’m away I have my uncle and my dad who coach the team, and I get a chance to stand in the workouts whenever I get a chance to,” Griffin said. “When I come home, I get more personal work with some of the athletes who are getting ready to go to college.”
Griffin said he’s always felt like he was “in a position to try to reach kids” because of situations he and his twin brother — who had his left hand amputated when he was four years old — have had to overcome.
“I have my own track team and I have a lot of kids who look up to me and I feel like I found a way to reach out to people,” Griffin said. “People tend to listen to me, so I feel like it’s easy for me to be a motivational speaker. I always feel like I want to give back, I was just raised that way. I want the team to do that and use this platform to reach everybody that I can.”