The honor of being selected as a U.S. Army All-American is not lost on Ryan Burns. The 6-foot-5, 218-pound quarterback from Ashburn (Va.) Stone Bridge received his U.S. Army All-American Bowl jersey during a presentation on Friday.
"Obviously this is a huge honor, I wasn't really expecting it," Burns said. "It's truly an honor to be there with all the members of the Army on a national stage."
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This U.S. Army All-American is following the path of a past All-American to Stanford, quarterback Andrew Luck. Being selected as a U.S. Army All-American is a key milestone on Burns' journey to emulate one of his idols.
"I've talked to him a few times. I've watched him over the years and really looked up to him," explained Burns. "He's a great guy and I'm going to try to be as good as he was at Stanford. I got to watch one of his practices when I visited there. His leadership and presence is excellent, he was the leader on that squad. In fact, he was leading a players practice when I saw him."
Other than trying to be like Luck, what made Burns want to go to Stanford?
"I've always loved Stanford, it was a dream school of mine," he said. "It's a great campus and the people out there are really amazing."
While he may not be outwardly campaigning for Stanford, like Christian Hackenberg and Adam Breneman are for Penn State, Burns is in contact with a few Stanford commits.
"I'm not actively recruiting guys to Stanford, but I do talk to (U.S. Army All-American linebacker) Peter Kalambayi," Burns said. "I was also talking a lot with (U.S. Army All-American linebacker) Doug Randolph. It bummed me out when he de-committed, but he's a good guy."
To be able to command an offense like Luck did, it takes a great deal of hard work and dedication. Adjusting from a high school offense to a college system is no easy feat.
"It's always going to be a big transition going from high school to college, mainly because the Wing-T is part of our offense," said Burns. "We have aspects of our offense that are similar to what Stanford is doing."
With the help of his teammate, U.S. Army All-American defensive end Jonathan Allen, Burns has led his team to an undefeated record so far and just blew out another high profile team in Virginia, 42-0. Stone Bridge looks to be one of the favorites for the Virginia State Championship.
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