Plant City’s Romello Jones, Jariyah Sawyer and Jermarian Jackson signed their National Letters of Intent on Wednesday.
With the early signing period for players across the country to sign their National Letters of Intent, officially committing to the universities where they’ll continue their football career at the college level, three athletes from Plant City held their ceremony on Wednesday.
Three multi-sport athletes at Plant City, defensive back/running back Romello Jones, wide receiver Jariyah Sawyer and defensive back Jermarian Jackson, all signed their letters of intent, with more players sure to follow on National Signing Day in February.
“I always enjoy this day with all of our kids because you get to celebrate them and all of their accomplishments,” Plant City football head coach James Booth said. “Especially with these three. To sign now, especially with the transfer portal and how recruiting is now and the lack of scholarships that a lot of these universities have, for these guys to go to really prestigious schools, for all of them to sign full-ride scholarships, it’s really rare in this day and age where a lot of guys have to go as preferred walk ons. So for them to sign these scholarships, to have school paid for, to have an opportunity to play at the next level, I’m just really proud of them.”
Jones signed with the United States Naval Academy. In his senior season, Jones did everything that was asked of him by the Raiders. Defensively, Jones totaled 36 tackles, one tackle for loss, one interception, one forced fumble, one fumble recovery and four passes defended. He also served as Plant City’s returner, hauled in 10 receptions for 130 yards and two touchdowns and took 48 carries for 383 yards and two more touchdowns on the ground. On special teams, he returned seven kickoffs for 266 yards and an average of 38 yards per return.
“Navy is just very prestigious, it’s a great honor,” Jones said. “Going there is something rare that not a lot of people have a chance to do. And then the benefits even after school, knowing that I’ll be successful regardless of what happens with football. It’s a smart investment, it’s a smart choice and I’m going to take advantage of it. I just thank God for giving me this opportunity.”
Sawyer signed with Colgate University. At receiver, Sawyer finished 2021 with 26 receptions for 210 yards, the second- and third-best marks among Plant City pass-catchers, respectively.
“Not only is Colgate a competitive football team in the Patriot League, but the academics and the opportunities after school,” Sawyer said. “They’re one of the best colleges in the country for setting you up for success. I just know that by going to that school, my life is going to be set up for the long run. Coming into today I had three offers, but I knew from the beginning that I would be going to Colgate.”
Jackson signed with Robert Morris. A standout in Plant City’s defensive backfield, this past season Jackson totaled 56 tackles, nine tackles for loss, one forced fumble and a team-high seven passes defended and three interceptions.
“Robert Morris stayed true to me for a long time, since day one,” Jackson said. “I took a visit up there and I loved it and I knew that it had to be home. They were by my side when I had nothing so I’m going to rock with them… When there was a dead period and there weren’t too many college coaches sticking with me, they were with me through the whole season. Talking with me and making me feel like family there.”