GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Florida defensive end Jordan Sherit knows his football future is riding on this fall, that NFL talent evaluators will look to see how he returns from a season-ending knee injury and produces in his redshirt senior season.
He wants the opportunity to play at the next level and continue the career he’s been working toward all these years.
But he also has an impressive backup plan lined up for whenever the time comes.
Sherit spent a week in Munich, Germany in the spring on a study-abroad trip as part of his international business master’s program.
“It was official. We were presenting two executives of BMW on the future of mobility and autonomous driving,” Sherit said. “I actually got more nervous for that than I have any football games.”
Sherit earned his B.S. in finance last fall and traces his aggressive approach to academics back to a pivotal decision to attend Hillsborough High School in Tampa — a school that would test him more in the classroom — despite not really knowing anybody there at the time.
“I think that matured me for college, and that’s kind of why I decided to take the route I have since I’ve been here,” he said.
Sherit credits the help of Florida’s academic support staff and the encouragement of defensive line coach Chris Rumph. He doesn’t think he’s taken an abnormal credit load at any point, but his classmates have offered the curious comment from time to time when they see him in the library studying for the same test.
“They’re like, ‘Dude, I don’t know how you’re doing this. You’ve got practice today and all this stuff.’ Something you kind of learn early on is if you want to do something you’ll find a way to do it,” Sherit said.
So what exactly does he want to do with all of this in the future?
“I loved studying finance undergrad. I love the valuation of companies, valuation of different things. Private equity is something I think would be a dream, but for me I’ve had internships in private equity, I’ve had internships in wealth management so I love both of those. I love the international business piece, [being] able to see world markets and kind of the macroeconomic level,” he said. “All of that stuff is interesting to me. My focus now is on football, but if I can do anything that results in any of that, any position where you can be competitive just like sports I think I’d find a home there.”
As he stated, though, he hopes all of that is well down the road after an extended football career.
Sherit had 5 tackles for loss, 3.5 sacks, 2 quarterback hurries and 38 tackles over 10 games last season. He missed a game in the middle of the season with a knee injury and later sustained a season-ending knee injury when he got rolled up on during a pass rush against Florida State late in the fall.
He still managed career numbers as he had just 1.5 sacks and 1.5 tackles for loss as a redshirt sophomore.
Sherit doesn’t want to discuss the injury beyond calling it a “knee injury,” but he says he’s ready to go and has been cleared by the medical staff.
He feels he’s been building momentum throughout his time with the Gators and expects that to continue in 2017.
“I think I was on a pretty good run last season. To have it end the way it did was kind of unfortunate, but I think one of the things I’ve been able to do is get better each year and be more productive each year. So I think I’ve just got to continue doing that,” Sherit said.
“This year’s got to be another productive season, even more productive than last season. I don’t see the injury as anything that should hold me back. If anything, I’ve learned a lot from it and I’ve become stronger.”