Two of Franklin County High School’s top athletes have signed deals to play college sports.
At a signing ceremony last month in the school library, seniors Megan Collins and Tyler Howard announced their plans to play golf, with Collins headed to the College of Coastal Georgia to play golf, and Howard on his way to an independent private junior college football program affiliated with Hillsborough Community College.
In playing for the Gattaca Hurricanes, Howard will have a chance to square off among the best athletes out of prep schools, junior colleges and junior varsity college teams in the southeastern region.
Created in 2010 in New Jersey, Gattaca Football now has three locations, the third being Delaware. In five years, more than 50 players have transferred to and played for Division I programs.
In Collins’ case, it will be an immediate jump to a full ride at a four-year college program, to play for coach Nicole Johns, who is now in her seventh season.
Collins was recruited by 27 colleges, after a brilliant high school career in which she helped lead the Lady Seahawks to an appearance at the state tournament. She averaged a little over 39 for nine-holes this year, placing third in the Big Bend Championships and earning first-team All Big Bend honors for the third year in a row, As a freshman she qualified for regionals and as a junior she qualified as an individual for state.
The College of Coastal Georgia Mariners women's golf team competes in the Southern States Athletic Conference, which is a NAIA Division I conference with schools and universities in Georgia, Alabama, South Carolina and Tennessee.
At the signing, which ended with Collins offering a drum recital with her fellow golfers, Assistant Golf Coach Stacy Kirvin praised the work of Scott Collins, who coached his daughter Megan and who was instrumental in starting the school’s golf program.
“This is our school’s first golf scholarship,” said Kirvin. “Anybody’s who’s played golf knows how hard it is. If you can play golf well, you’re going to be successful in life.”