Incoming Quarterback Comfortable With Tigers

Auburn freshman quarterback Calvin Booker talks about the last year and Coach Al Borges' offense.

Auburn, Ala.–-Calvin Booker was a virtual unknown when he arrived on the Auburn campus last June for a team passing camp. As a junior he had split time at quarterback with another player at Mays High in Atlanta, but had done little to catch the eye of college coaches. That would all change in the blink of an eye for Booker.

Showing a strong arm and good poise just a week earlier at the regional EA Sports quarterback camp, Booker's name had already begun to spread among recruiting circles, but his performance at Auburn sent his stock up significantly higher. Easily the top passer at the camp, Booker's show earned him a scholarship offer from the Tigers. In the weeks to come Georgia Tech, Stanford, Notre Dame and others would be added to the list before Booker made an early decision and selected Auburn.

Calvin Booker throws during last year's camp at Auburn.

That decision would be something that Booker looked back on in the weeks to follow as a good thing in his life. Able to concentrate on learning his fourth offense in four seasons of high school football as well as focus on academics instead of recruiting, Booker flourished and his team followed his lead.

"It took a lot of pressure off me," Booker says. "If a coach or scout was coming to the game a lot of people would try to impress them. They wouldn't let the game come to them. I was more relaxed in games. I was never nervous because I didn't feel like I had anything to prove. We went on and went 10-0. I had nothing to prove so I just relaxed. I was back there and did my thing."

In addition to winning football games, Booker took the time to travel to Auburn on several weekends to watch the Tigers and visit with future teammates during their season. Booker says that those trips really helped him realize the decision he made during the summer was the right one for him.

"Everytime I came down here it solidified it that much more," Booker says. "Everyone is real nice and I have started hanging with the players. They were cool and easy to get along with. They were receptive to me and that makes me more receptive to the school. I know I can come in here where there's not a lot of trouble and things going wrong. It just made me comfortable."

One of the friends Booker added in the last year is Auburn quarterback Jason Campbell. A highly-recruited player coming out of high school with huge credentials, Campbell knows what Booker is going through and has helped in the transition this summer from high school to college.

Living in Auburn has also allowed Booker to get a leg up on learning the offense of Coach Al Borges. Last season the Tigers struggled to score points and move the ball consistently, but Booker says what he saw in the spring has encouraged him about his future and the future of Auburn football.

"I'm very excited because in the spring the defense is supposed to do be ahead of the offense," Booker says. "What I saw was completely opposite. They threw the ball down the field a lot and I'm looking forward to doing that. I can't wait. Coach Borges has a good track record. I'm anxious to learn and see how things turn out."


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