Varsity Preps

Carlos Burton, #16 in Arkansas 25 for 2015

Photo by Curt Youngblood

Toughness is a trait that all running backs should have, but not all do. Carlos Burton though, embodies the word toughness. Burton is not afraid of contact and is willing to drive his feet until an opening comes up for him. From there, that’s when he strikes and takes it to the house. What Burton may lack in speed and agility, he makes up with toughness and desire to move the football.

Burton comes in standing 5’11” and weighing 198 pounds, which isn’t bad size for a high school running back. With the 4.69 40 time though, that is going to hurt his chances to play at a major college level. That is just not going to cut it at the running back position. If he can work on that speed here this summer and shave some of that time off and get to even a 4.59, then that will immensely help his cause.

Burton has that one glaring issue, but his fearless running style will impress coaches no matter what speed. Burton hits the hole hard and fast and chops his feet to get every last bit of yardage that he can. He doesn’t dance in the backfield like some of the more finesse running backs do. I would be hard pressed to say that Burton rarely gets caught in the backfield for negative yardage. Although his speed may be in question, Burton changes gears fairly well. After rumbling through the initial wash of the interior lineman, Burton hits that second gear and makes it into the secondary almost as soon as he’s entering linebacker depth.

Burton has not had as much attention as a top-15 recruit in the state would. He still meets with coaches from Arkansas and at one point had come in contact with Alabama, but other than that, Burton hasn’t had a lot of communication with coaching staffs. Arkansas is recruiting Burton, but not for the running back position. Burton also plays outside linebacker at Glen Rose High School, so the coaches are wanting to potentially move him to safety, due to his size, if he were to end up at Arkansas. Only time will tell though, if for one, Burton is willing to change positions to a spot that he hasn’t played, and also whether or not the coaches are comfortable with offering a player that hasn’t played that position. Camps this summer will be more important for Burton than the vast majority of the players on the 25 for 2015 list.

The Verdict: Burton is not going to be a major college football running back unless he speed can improve vastly in the next 8 months. That is a lot to ask of a player. He could do very well at the Divison II level or even a Division 1 FCS school. Burton will have options, just not the options that he would hope to have if he wants to pursue the running back position. Camps will make or break Burton. That’s a lot of pressure but that’s the new standard for fringe players. He has a strong will and I wouldn’t be surprised if that Arkansas offer doesn’t come through for Burton playing defense.

Pros: Hard-nosed runner, tough

Cons: Speed, agility

Check out Carlos’ Hudl page: http://www.hudl.com/athlete/1629140/carlos-burton

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