But after countless accolades, including being the ACC Defensive Player of the Year, the Florida native was drafted by the Seattle Seahawkson Saturday.
Griffin had his left hand surgically removed when he was just four years old as he had been born with a condition that prevented the fingers on his hand from developing.
"I think I was more scared of him tackling me in the bathroom and not knowing what was happening than anything", Shaquem said.
"I'm a guy who is going to come in and work my butt off", Griffin said in his conference call with the Seahawks media. I get to play alongside my brother and it's a blessing. He was the American Athletic Conference defensive player of the year in 2016 and the MVP of UCF's Peach Bowl victory against Auburn last season when UCF went 13-0.
So I stopped short of rooting for the Seahawks to draft Shaquill's twin brother right up until the very moment the Seahawks picked him. "I was trying to get the words out, but I couldn't talk", Shaqueem said on ESPN minutes after he was drafted. "So every day, I made sure to mention my brother about something, even just, 'Hey, man, my brother got a good workout in, his backpedal is looking smooth every day.' [The Seahawks] continued to let me know how much they loved my brother, how much they loved my family".
I don't know if I agree that Shaquem should have been drafted in the first round, but he certainly should have been taken ahead of Callaway - hands down!.
His proud sibling, who was selected by the Seahawks in the third round past year, said he did not cry on his own draft day but when he heard about Shaquem's success he was unable to hold back the tears.
Like everything else that has been a testament to the perseverance of Shaquem Griffin's football career, the NFL draft's waiting process couldn't beat him either. "I'm just glad I was one of the selected few to be here". He was a force as an outside linebacker rushing off the edge at UCF, but at 6-foot and 227 pounds with blazing speed, he could transition to being the bigger safety Carroll likes to have on his defense.
Using a prosthetic on his left arm he posted 20 repetitions on the bench-press as National Football League hopefuls were put through their paces by team representatives in March.
I hope I am an inspiration for people, to see I can do whatever I want.
It is not only on the field that Griffin proved himself to the franchise.