The new transfer rules for high school athletics, particularly football, do not go into effect until July 1.
But Manatee County got an early start on Friday when Desmine Ross confirmed to the Bradenton Herald that he has transferred from Braden River High School to Palmetto. Ross shined for the Pirates during their spring game victory last month at St. Petersburg Lakewood. He had two interceptions as a starting defensive back.
He said he originally wanted to transfer after last season ended.
“I put a lot of thought into playing where I felt comfortable,” said Ross via a phone interview Friday. “I have a better relationship with the coaching staff. I feel like home, and I want to stay in the area.”
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A rising senior, Ross wasn’t a starter last season for the Pirates. But the departure of college-bound defensive backs JoJo Louis (Florida International University) and A.J. Moore (Minot State) created openings in Braden River’s secondary.
“They knew I was going to leave,” said Ross about his former teammates. “The only thing they told me was at the end of the day, you have to do what’s best for you.”
Ross said he had his mind made up during the spring that he would transfer to play corner back for Palmetto.
“I don’t really know him, but I look forward to meeting him,” Palmetto football head coach Dave Marino’s said late Friday.
“Everybody on the team, they’re my boys,” Ross said. “I played on 7-on-7 with them. We hang out all the time.”