When we played games…
Our 2017 BCH Sports Underclassman of the Year goes to a first year quarterback out of Clyde. Payton Burton was the starting running back his sophomore year for the Bulldogs, and took over as QB 1 this year for his junior season.
Payton Burton said, “It was a lot of help knowing what the running backs were doing every play, and knowing that if my receivers aren’t open or anything that I’ll have a running back open or knowing that I have really good running backs to take care of what they need to and everything, it was just a good year for that.”
Rocky Smart said, “You know you always target guys as they’re coming up through the grades and he’s always done a great job at quarterback when he was younger and I knew that he would step up in that role one day and do a great job for us.”
And step up he did. This season, Payton had 2,304 total yards, with over 15 hundred of those through the air. The junior also scored 32 touchdowns, 17 passing, and 15 rushing. But Payton attributes a lot of his success to his receivers.
Burton said, “All I had to do was throw it up and they had the speed and everything else and they would go get it so they made me look really good over the years.”
And for as much as Payton grew on the field, he also grew tremendously as a leader of the Bulldogs.
Smart said, “In that role being the quarterback, you want a guy, one who can encourage and one who can also get on kids who are not giving max efforts that day so he was able to do all of those things for us.”
Payton missed 3 games during this year with an ankle injury and was still able to put up these stats, so he has some high hopes for his senior season next year.
Burton said, “For my goals for my senior year, I want to just go far and keep going in football and make the most of it as I can, soak it all in.”
Payton Burton. Your BCH Sports Underclassman of the Year.