January 21, 2009

Burton playing for hometown

Lee's Summit (MO) linebacker Adam Burton committed to Missouri in June and hasn't had a second thought. The Missouri native grew up watching the Tigers, and now he is ready for his family to watch him put on the black and gold.

"It means a lot," he said. "I got a lot of family down in Missouri, so they can always watch me play. You got the whole state behind MU, and it's the team in the area, so it's pretty exciting to be on it."

According to Burton, his senior year of football was successful. He was able to lead his team with his play on the field and the experience he brought to the defense.

"We made it to the quarterfinals, so we were two games away from state," Burton said. "We did pretty good this year. Right now, since football is over, I have been working out and preparing for next year. I think I was able to use my experience because we had a lot of young guys on defense. I was able to use my experience and leadership within the team to help the defense out."

Since committing, Burton has kept in touch with coach Andy Hill on a weekly basis and has become close friends with another recruit.

"One of the recruits Andrew Wilson is one of my pretty good friends actually," the linebacker said. "We talk and always talk about Mizzou and what we are looking forward to and stuff."

Both Wilson and Burton will be looking to strengthen a defense that struggled this past season. One of the ways Burton is looking to improve is by working on his speed.

"Now, more than ever, times have changed and guys are getting faster," the Mizzou commit said. "A lot of teams have gone to the spread offense and with the position I like to play, the linebackers are not gigantic anymore. They have to be fast guys because they have to cover people."

The 6-1 linebacker used to play basketball, but after he tore his ACL during his junior football season, he decided that he did not want to risk playing basketball anymore. For Burton, football is something that runs in his blood.

"I started playing when I was six years old," Burton said. "My whole family was a football family. My brother played, my dad played in college and all my cousins play football. It was a given for me to play football."

Between now and football season, Burton said he will continue to workout, and he hopes to get a workout plan from Mizzou after he signs his letter of intent. For Burton, going to Mizzou is making a dream become a reality.

"It has always been my dream to play Division 1 football as it is for any younger football player," he said. "I am just ready to get down there and step up the level of play and see what I can do."

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