Al-Terek McBurse is having a dream season. This senior running back from Winter Springs (Fla.) High School has rushed for 1,890 yards on 165 carries in only eight games this season. He has also rushed for 19 scores.
Even better for McBurse and his teammates is that they are 6-2 and on the brink of a playoff berth. And on Friday night they play Sanford (Fla.) Seminole High School. They are also 6-2 and happen to feature three big time prospects themselves. This is an opponent that McBurse is quite familiar with.
"Those are my buddies - Ray Ray (Armstrong), Dyron (Dye) and Andre (DeBose)," McBurse said. We all talk all the time. We have even taken a bunch of visits together. They had tried to get me to transfer there. My father and Ray Ray's father's have been best friends for a long time. We are five miles from there and we all grew up together so this is an exciting game for all of us. We have been talking junk every day. The funny thing is that I have killed them every year. I have always rushed for 200 yards or so against those guys. But I know they are better this season and have a stacked deck."
Following the big game McBurse will take his first official visit. On Saturday he leaves for Lincoln, Nebraska for a visit with the big red machine.
"I just bought a nice jacket to keep me nice and warm. Seriously, I heard it would be cold and I really didn't have anything to keep me warm. I am very excited about the trip and the Nebraska program. I don't know much about them but I know they have great tradition and that they were once a big time program."
The Cornhuskers were a team that jumped on McBurse late in the process. They were intrigued and sent letter after letter. They tried to call him on the phone but McBurse never picked up because it came across his caller id as "unknown". Finally the Nebraska coaches got word to his high school coach and sent McBurse a written offer. Now he will visit Lincoln for the first time.
"It will be like a first date because they don't know me too well and I don't know much about them. But I am very curious and we'll see what happens."
McBurse says he will also visit Kansas (12-6) on the first weekend of December and Georgia Tech next month as well. Although he remains open he knows that he will have to make a decision soon because he's graduating early and enrolling in his school choice in January.
"Wow. It's getting close and I am not sure of my final two visits. There are so many to choose from and lots of options out there. It's been a crazy fall because I have had a good season and it has helped me in recruiting. So many new schools have offered. I just have to find the best opportunity for me and where I can make it work."
Some say local schools like UCF and USF have a good shot at McBurse. But the Knights and Bulls will have to wait it out just like everyone else.
"There's some pressure on me to visit schools here in Florida. But I have been everywhere so many times that I don't want to waste a visit on a local school. They are still in it even though I will not take an official visit there."
Another big event on the horizon for McBurse is the county rushing record. He's less than 300 yards shy of Marquette Smith's record. Smith was an All-American back from the early '90s from Lake Howell. It's fitting that McBurse and his Winter Spring team plays Lake Howell next week in the season finale.
"It could be something special next weekend. How cool would it be to break that record playing against his alma mater?"