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ESPN lists Plant among “top quarterback high schools”

Posted Jan 19, 2012 by Bill Ward

Updated Jan 19, 2012 at 09:47 PM

Ok, this is no big surprise to those who follow high school football in Hillsborough County. But Plant High, the school that was won four state titles in the past six years with four different quarterbacks under center, received some national notice today with an ESPN article about the nation’s “top quarterback high schools.”

Duh.

For starters, however, ESPN acknowledges Mater Dei of Santa Ana, Calif., as “Quarterback High.” This private school in Southern California has turned out national champions, Heisman Trophy winners and first-round NFL draft picks including John Huarte (1964 Heisman, Notre Dame), Matt Leinart (2004) and John Huarte (1964), NCAA record holder and Heisman finalist Colt Brennan and current USC star QB Matt Barkley.

Far enough. But ESPN rightfully tips the hat to several other schools, including Plant as the lone QB factory in Florida and one of the few outside of California and Texas. They credit head coach Robert Weiner at Plant, who has helped mold the careers of state champion quarterbacks Robert Marve (Purdue), Aaron Murray (Georgia), Phillip Ely (Alabama) and, in just one season as a starter James Few, who is likely to play next fall for an elite academic/Ivy League school.

Stay tuned to see who is the next star under center at Plant will be. With the potential rewards at stake, there’s likely to be intense competition for the starting QB job at Dad’s Stadium over the next several months.

To see the complete list of ESPN’s QB high schools, please follow this link: http://espn.go.com/high-school/football/great-state-debate/story/_/id/7476664/high-school-quarterback-factories?eleven=twelve

Photo: It’s no Jedi mind trick. Plant coach Robert Weiner and his staff really have something going on at Himes Ave. when it comes to quarterbacks and state titles. Photo by Bill Ward.

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