Blount tabbed top offensive player|Plymouth RB tallied 1,814 yards and 28 touchdowns
Published 7:44 pm Tuesday, January 18, 2011
By By BRIAN HAINES
PLYMOUTH Heading into the 2010 prep football season, everybody knew the key to stopping Plymouth would be to slow down running back Ronnell Blount.
Knowing is a lot different than doing.
Blount finished the season with an astounding 1,814 yards and 28 touchdowns as he led the Vikings to a 13-2 record, a share of the Four Rivers Conference title and a trip the NCHSAA 1-A East Regional round of the playoffs. Blounts efforts also made him an easy choice to be the Washington Daily News Offensive Player of the Year.
The speedy, yet powerful, Blount was a WDN all-area first-team back last season, but his work during the off-season, coupled with his improved grasp on coach Robert Codys wing-T offense, elevated his game to the next level.
I think he has improved his footwork, his speed and his size, Cody said. He read his blocks a whole lot better this year. He is better at anticipating where the hole is going to be because he has run the plays so many times.
Standing at roughly at 6-2, 180 pounds, the muscular Blount describes his running style as hard, and after going through four years of Vikings training camps, its easy to see how it got to be that way.
Cody runs his players through The Gantlet, an improvised training course set up at Plymouth High School which consists of bleacher runs, footwork drills, agility drills, running while dragging tires, flipping over monster truck-sized tires and running while carrying two buckets of water.
This summer, I just came in and wanted to get better and knew I had to work hard, Blount said. When I was a freshman, I used to look up to the seniors like K.J. Hunt and Dasheen Perry and say that I wanted to be where they were. I saw how they pushed themselves and said Im going to push myself too.
While Blounts hard work has certainly paid off, he is quick to acknowledge the work of his offensive line, which was led by the giant left tackle Paris Palmer and one of the best in the area.
We feed off of them. They opened holes up for us and we would go right through them, Blount said. We (running backs) knew they had our backs. They did a great job blocking.
Blount, who also excels at basketball and baseball, was the Washington Daily News Athlete of the Year last year, and Cody said that his athletic diversity has helped him become a better leader and competitor.
One intangible that he has is that he has learned to be a winner, Cody said. He has learned to work past challenges and you cant do that unless you play all sports. … Hes is out there, and he is constantly in a competitive mode; and the more you are in a competitive mode, the better competitor you are; and he is definitely a very good competitor.
Blount said he is open to playing any of the three sports he plays at the next level, and he said that he would like to major in sports management when he gets to college.