football

Size doesnt matter

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Good things come in small packages, especially when you're part of the Kansas State football program.
The Wildcats have made a living out of taking smaller, maybe even under-recruited players, and turning them into stars on the next level. People in Manhattan, Kan., will never forget the job that Darren Sproles did for the Wildcats.
The success with small backs attracted one of the better shorter in stature backs in Texas to commit early to K-State, and it's a decision that Leon Patton of Dallas W.T. White hasn't regretted one bit.
"I'm 100 percent sure that I'm going to Kansas State," Patton, a 5-foot-7, 174-pound athlete/running back.
"I really don't even know if other schools are trying to recruit me. I've not been home a lot this summer, and I didn't go to any camps. I'm still very excited about my decision to go to K-State."
Patton said early on in the recruiting process that if K-State were to offer him, it would be a decision he'd have a hard time turning down. He committed back on April 19, following in the footsteps of his hero, Sproles.
"I've always tried to pattern my game like his," Patton said. "He's a tough runner and people always said he was too small to be a good player. I've heard that a lot about me, too. It's not your size, it's the size of your heart."
Patton said he's been told by K-State assistants – he was recruited by defensive coordinator Bobby Elliott – that he'll be used in a number of different ways in Manhattan.
"I'd like to continue to return punts and kicks," he said. "But I think I can carry the load at running back."
With practices starting next Monday for his senior season, Patton said he spent most of the summer getting ready to become White's feature back. Last season he split time with another rusher but still managed to rack up 738 yards on only 70 carries.
"I've been working on everything," he said. "I've worked hard on my strength, speed and my acceleration. We run with parachutes and other things like that."
His goals are mainly team oriented.
"I want to win district and make it to the playoffs," he said. "Those are big expectations. We don't have small goals."
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