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February 2, 2013

BCP Ignite Event reveals talent

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TAMPA -- On a moderate Saturday afternoon in the middle of strawberry country, over 260 athletes from all over Tampa Bay and beyond gathered at Strawberry Crest High School for the fourth annual Ignite Combine/Skills Challenge - presented by BigCountyPreps.com

The event drew blue-chip athletes and rising stars - giving each registrant a chance to test on various combine elements and also a little one-on-one challenge.

"It blew up. We expected to kill the number to where the kids could get a lot of reps," said BCP founder Preston Jackson. "The coaches could still get a chance to evaluate the kids pretty well and the parents could be happy with the performance of the trial."

"The best players should perform like the best players," said Jackson. "And the guys that we don't know about need to kick the behind of the best players. They need to stand up on their own two feet and let us know 'hey, I can be just as good as these guys' Purely to find out who exactly we don't know about."

Jackson said the event has grown over the years and has launched the exposure for several Tampa Bay area recruits who are now playing college ball.

"Nelson Agholor, Vernon Hargreaves III, Travis Johnson, and on and on," said Jackson. "These guys come here and show that they are the best or they get evaluated as one of the best."

Wayne Ward, head coach at Plant City High School brought several of his players to the event.

"First of all, I'm here to get my players exposure," said Ward. "And to come out here and to compete against some of the best talent in the area."

Plant QB Colby Brown won MVP for the quarterbacks, which included Brad Mayes and Chase Litton among the competitors.

"It feels awesome, I've been working real hard and working with coach (Robert) Weiner on a lot of things," said Brown. "There's so many good guys out here like Chase (Litton) and Kyle (Ploucher) so it feels really good to be the MVP."

One player who felt the day was rewarding was Montel McBride from Plant City High School. "I learned a lot today," McBride said. "My technique needs to improve. I'm not turniing my hips, and I'm leaning forward. It's a lot of mechanics and I really enjoyed being helped with the various things I need to improve on."

Over 50 schools were represented at the event. We'll have our analysis and breakdown tomorrow.

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