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Signing Day: SC's Plummer, Kelly, Franklin honored on national signing day

Brian Plummer had trouble sleeping on Tuesday night. He knew what was about to happen.

At 7:01 a.m. on Wednesday morning, the South Carroll senior officially joined the University of Maryland football program. And not only that, but his national letter of intent was the first to arrive to Terps coach DJ Durkin via email or fax, just one minute after the signing period began.

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"I woke up and I was full of energy and I was just ready to send it in," said Plummer, a 6-foot-7, 300-pound tackle. "Which shows my enthusiasm and excitement."

On Wednesday afternoon, Plummer, along with former teammate Silas Kelly (Coastal Carolina) and girls soccer player Sam Franklin (Virginia Military Institute) were all honored at the media center at South Carroll as the trio each signed their NLI to become a Division I athlete.

It's rare for a Carroll high school to produce a pair of Division I football players in the same year. But the Cavaliers, who have won back-to-back county championships and made the Class 2A West playoffs the last seven seasons, are an exception.

Plummer has been verbally committed to Maryland since last spring.

"It's kind of been quiet with recruiting and committing and everything, but I think today was a good way to end it all," Plummer said. "Making it official is a really cool thing."

Even between his early-morning signing and the after-school ceremony, Plummer still had national signing day on the mind. He was pleased to see the other recruits Durkin was pulling in during his first signing day as a head coach.

"All day when I had breaks in class, I was on Twitter looking at all the people that signed," Plummer said. "It was really getting me excited, seeing all my future teammates and seeing how enthusiastic the coaches are about next year. It really gets me excited to get on campus."

Kelly was originally committed to join Plummer on the Terps, but de-committed in December after Durkin became the team's new coach. In January, Kelly decided on Coastal Carolina, an FBS school in the Sun Belt Conference.

It was a long process, Kelly said, but he's happy with the final decision he made.

"I think I'm in the best situation that I could've been in," Kelly said. "I'm just really blessed to have this opportunity."

Plummer and Kelly played key roles in helping South Carroll win the 2A West Region title in their junior seasons in 2014. Then, the duo helped the Cavaliers go 10-2 in 2015, again helping them make the region final.

In the final two years of his high school career, Plummer blocked for running backs Chris Gavin and Steven Baca. Gavin broke the county single-season rushing record with 2,016 yards in 2014, then Baca ran for 1,204 in 2015.

Kelly, who will play linebacker for the Chanticleers, performed well at wide receiver and safety in his career at SC, but it was on defense where he really shined. He leaves the Cavaliers with 10 career interceptions, the second-most in program history, and 238 tackles, the third-most ever for an SC player.

"It's a real testament to our coaching staff because they've coached us for four years and helped us become the football players and men that we've become," Kelly said. "It kind of just put South Carroll on the map a little bit and showed that even out in Carroll County there are people who can play football at a high level."

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Kelly earned Times first team all-county defense honors in both 2014 and 2015. Plummer was a first-team selection this past fall.

Franklin was named first team all-county for SC's girls soccer squad in 2013 as a sophomore and her senior season last fall. The former Cavaliers midfielder said she's always had an interest in joining the military, and now she gets the opportunity to do that while continuing her soccer career at the next level.

"I couldn't be more excited, there's a lot to look forward to," Franklin said. "VMI was just the perfect fit for me. I love the coaching staff, I love the teammates, I love just the school in general."

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