When Gulliver Prep senior Bo Ellis made it official this week and signed to play football for Harvard University, he credited his mom and his Gulliver coaches with helping him find success.
Bo was one of six athletes at the Gulliver Prep Spring National Signing Day ceremony. The 5-foot-9-inch, 185-pound running back maintains a 3.87 GPA with a course load of honors and Advanced Placement classes. His stats on the football field are equally impressive. He logged 1,290 yards on 159 carries for an average of 8.1 yards and recorded 18 touchdowns during the 2012 season. He also is a 2013 Miami Herald Silver Knight nominee in athletics.
The journey has not been easy.
“Bo has overcome tremendous obstacles to achieve this great success,” said Mark Schusterman, Gulliver’s athletic director in a release. “Bo has two siblings of his own, but lived with as many as 14 people under one roof while growing up. His mother, Tranika Ellis, had taken in several nieces and nephews after Ellis’ grandmother’s death. The following year when Bo was in seventh grade, his father was tragically killed. Despite everything, his mother had high expectations for her son to excel both in school and life.”
Bo said that he learned to work hard through “my mother's drive to instill and expect excellence from me at an early age. Her drive, courage and dedication is something I consistently seek to emulate in my life and will never forget,” he said.
He also credits his football coach, Earl Sims.
“Coach Sims has been a father figure for me and all of my teammates, preparing us for life through football. Coming to Gulliver was one of the best decisions I made in my life.”
Before Gulliver, Bo attended Homestead Middle and was part of the Genesis Gifted Center. There he competed in football, basketball, and track and was honored with Athlete of the Year, the Scholar Athlete Award and Literature Award for best writer. He transferred to Gulliver Prep in the ninth grade, where he continued to excel and impress his teammates and classmates, and faculty members and administrators.
His awards at Gulliver also include the Duke Book Award for scholar athletes, Excellence in Law and Litigation, Coaches’ Choice Award, and Team/Offensive MVP for football. He will study economics at Harvard.
“We are extremely proud of Bo and very grateful to have had him at Gulliver for the past four years,” said Director and Head of Schools John Krutulis. “We wish him all the best for the future and know that he will continue to excel on all levels.”
The other seniors athletes celebrating signing day were Jordi Dalmau and Grant Siegel who will play football at Colgate University, and soccer players, Nicole Harris who will attend Troy University, Kai-Lin Hernandez who will attend High Point University, and Sophia Trujillo who will attend San Diego State University.
“Congratulations to our stellar student-athletes and their families for their outstanding achievements,” Schusterman said. “The Gulliver family wishes you the best in college as you bring pride and honor to all of us.”
LOOKING FOR COMETS
Learn more about how to get started watching the night skies when Southern Cross Astros President Lester Shalloway and Board Member Roberto Torres, present “Backyard Astronomy” at 8 p.m. on Feb. 15, at the FIU Physics Building CP-145 lecture hall, Modesto Maidique campus. This is a perfect program for future astronomers, novices, and those who are unable to drive long distances at night to a dark viewing site.