With his headphones on tight and J. Cole’s Born Sinner album blasting through his ears, Chris Lammons danced between repetitions in the weight room at Plantation High on Tuesday.
A day after announcing his oral commitment to play cornerback at the University of Florida on ESPNU, Lammons has his eyes set on being a persistent, humble leader for the Colonels.
“I’m just looking forward to being a big leader on my team,” said Lammons, the 10th-best player at the athlete position in the country according to ESPN and Plantation’s starting quarterback. “[I want to] just show everybody what they got to do so we can practice like we’re going into a game.”
If the Colonels plan on overthrowing their District 15-7A rivals and state champion Fort Lauderdale St. Thomas Aquinas, Plantation coach Steve Davis said it all starts on offense, where he expects Lammons, tight end Ravian Pierce and wide receiver Kendon Davis to make big contributions.
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“There are really no excuses,” said Steve Davis, who has been Plantation’s coach since 2004. “I expect a lot out of [the offense] this year because we have a lot of guys coming back.”
Lammons and Pierce, ranked a four-star tight end by ESPN and Scout who plans to announce his college decision among Arkansas, Alabama and Florida on Aug. 23, hang out a lot outside of the football.
Their relationship stems from their similar family situations. Lammons lives with his older sister because his parents died when he was 11. As for Pierce, he has been living with his grandmother since his mother died when he was 1. His father lives in Kentucky.
“He’s like a big kid that likes to have fun,” Lammons said of Pierce. “He enjoys everything. He just tries to be humble with everything he does.
Added Pierce: “We have a special connection.”
Pierce said his bond with Lammons also extends to the football field, where they know exactly what the other person is thinking once they make eye contact.
“If I’m wide [open] by myself and I give him a look, he already knows what that means,” Pierce said.
Lammons, Pierce and several other Plantation players worked out together outside of team activities this offseason. Pierce said working with Lammons helped Kendon Davis, running back Antwuan Haynes, receiver Jewison Dawkings, cornerback Daquan Irvin and himself with learning how to be more aware.
“Chris is a great leader,” Pierce said. “He obviously is a top athlete, and he’s a great teammate. He’s very competitive also. I like his level of intensity. He’s also working and trying his best to do what he has to do.”
As far as defense, Steve Davis expects linebacker Marcus Johnson and linemen Charles Williams and Jerry Fields to lead a unit expected to field six sophomores.
“They’re young kids who could potentially be Division I kids down the road,” Davis said. “It’s just a matter of them maturing.”
Added Williams: “Our defense is young, but I think we can handle the schedule. The offense is going to have our back for sure, but I just preach to our defense to keep learning every day since we’re so young.”
Plantation begins it season against nondistrict opponents Fort Lauderdale Dillard, Coral Springs Taravella and Miramar, but has one Nov. 1 against Aquinas circled.
The Colonels will host the Raiders, looking to avenge their exit in the regional semifinals last season. Plantation played on Aquinas’ home field twice in 2012, giving up a late lead and falling 24-20 on Oct. 26 before a 38-7 loss on Nov. 23.
“Last year we let them slip away [in the first game],” Pierce said. “But this year, we’re definitely going to bring it.”