September 22, 2010

Phillips earns early offers

Venice High School in Florida has produced over a dozen Division I college football players this decade and it doesn't appear that the program has any intentions of slowing down that trend.

The Indians already have two 2010 prospects verbally committed to DI programs with a third drawing interest from several programs. And junior defensive tackle Dante Phillips already holds verbal offers from programs such as Alabama, Florida, Tennessee, Kentucky and Purdue.

Phillips also has drawn interest from some of the Midwest's top programs.

"I get a lot (of interest) from Ohio State and I'm starting to get some from Notre Dame," Phillips said. "Ohio State sends handwritten (letters) saying they'll be back in the fall to talk. I've already talked to the D-line coach on the phone."

The offers and interest have motivated Phillips to continue to work hard, but he said he's nowhere near identifying any favorites.

"Everybody's in it right now," he said. "I'm starting to get more looks and I'm just looking around."

So far Phillips only has visited the University of Florida, where former teammate Trey Burton now resides. Phillips has been to Gainesville about seven times and plans to be back there this weekend.

"I was there for the Miami (Ohio) game and might be up there this weekend," he said.

Phillips is being recruited primarily as a defensive end or tackle but Clemson likes him at offensive tackle.

As a freshman he played along the offensive line at University Christian before transferring to Venice.

Since then he dropped some weight to help him get to the passer even faster.

"I dropped the weight so I could move better on the D-line," he said.

Phillips said he runs the 40-yard dash in 4.9 seconds, the shuttle run in 4.54 seconds and has posted a 28-inch vertical jump.

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