One of the top signal callers for the Class of 2011 will be Phillip Ely from Tampa Plant. Ely, 6-0 and 175 pounds, takes over for Aaron Murray (Georgia). Actually, he took over for an injured Murray last season and performed very well. That experience will go a long way to helping Ely this season, his first as the Plant starting quarterback.
"I am so excited about this season," Ely said. "I really think that experience of last season really helped. To get in the heat of things like I did. I mean I wasn't supposed to have that kind of experience last year. It gives me a lot of confidence going into this season."
A big factor for Plant this season will be their running game. Plant returns senior Allen Sampson and they also now have James Wilder, one of the prospects in the 2011 class. This will give even more balance to the high octane Plant offense.
"We have a new dimension and people don't expect us to run. This will surprise some people and help out our passing game."
Ely got some big news earlier today when he received his first (verbal) scholarship offer. That will be the first of many for this signal caller.
"That is the first and it's very exciting to me. I didn't think I would get anything so soon. It's a good start and I am very happy about it."
Plant has a monster opening game in their Kickoff Classic, as they host Bradenton Manatee. They are one of the state's top programs that has some super players on their roster like quarterback Brion Carnes (USF commitment), wide receiver Ace Sanders and junior running back Mike Blakely.
"Oh gosh, it's exciting. To play a team like that, it's going to be a lot of fun. We have to come out with an attitude and play fast and quick. I played some seven on seven with some of those guys and I have a lot of respect for that team."