"A Serious Passion For the Game"

Venice High School head football coach Nick Coleman believes that Marcus Platt's big play ability makes him a great pickup for West Virginia

Platt, who verballed to West Virginia last week, is a big play performer on both sides of the ball, according to his high school coach.

"He played both running back and defensive back for us, and he made key plays at critical times for us," said head coach Nick Coleman. "It just seemed like he was always in the right place at the right time. He has a serious passion for the game."

Platt, who added seven interceptions on defense to more than 1400 yards from scrimmage on offense as a senior, was the player that Venice looked to for the game-turning play. Not only that, but the multi-talented senior was also a leader both on and off the field.

"We vote for our captains as a team, and Marcus got 36 of the 38 possible votes," Coleman noted. "He had the respect of our team, and not just for what he did on the field. He earned it."

West Virginia will probably look at Platt in the defensive backfield first, but Coleman noted that his departing star would be able to help at more than one position if needed.

"One thing about Marcus is that he can fit in wherever they need him - running back, defensive back, wherever. Defensively though, he's really good. He's the best defensive back to ever come through here."

Coleman was also impressed with the job that Mountaineer assistant Steve Bird and the rest of the WVU coaches did with Platt.

"I think they have a lot of energy, and the represent the program well," Coleman said of the coaches in general and Bird in particular. "The one thing that stood out was that they were very honest and upfront with Marcus. They didn't make any wild promises. They recruited him hard, but they were honest with him all the way through the process."

With any player travelling a long distance form home to go to school, there's always the concern of homesickness and the problems of adjusting to a new environment. Coleman, however, doesn't see any potential problems on the horizon for his even-keeled senior.

"Here at Venice we're three or four hours from any big schools, so I don't see any difference between driving for four hours in a car or flying that long in a plane," Coleman said. "I think Marcus is going to adjust really well. He's a leader, and I think he will be fine."

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