Lanett, Ala.--Every year several prospects come out of nowhere during the camp season to become household names in recruiting by the end of their senior years. This summer that player is hoping to be athletic defensive back/wide receiver Juwann Booker.
A three-year starter at receiver for the Panthers as well as a vital part of both the basketball and baseball programs, Booker is an all-around athlete that showed a knack for finding the football during Auburn's 7-on-7 passing camp last Thursday and Friday. In eight games over two days, Booker finished with 10 touchdowns and eight interceptions with two picks returned for touchdowns. The first day alone he scored nine touchdowns and had four picks in just five games. The two-way standout says that he excels on both sides of the ball but definitely prefers one over the other.
"I have been a starter since my ninth grade year," Booker tells Inside The Auburn Tigers. "I was playing corner then and didn't play any offense. My 10th grade year we came to the passing camp for the first time with Coach (Ronnie) Sikes and I moved to receiver since I did so well in the passing camp. I have been our leading receiver since then.
"I like defense better right now. I moved to safety last year in the third game of the season because our safety wasn't producing good. I told my coach I could do it and I could make all the tackles. I had 80 tackles and four interceptions."
Booker is a physical player that plays bigger than his size would indicate.
On offense Booker added 40 catches for 700 yards and nine receiving touchdowns. He also added a punt return for a score as the Panthers advanced to the third round of the Class 2A playoffs before falling to eventual state champion Leroy.
At 5-11, 175, Booker has the size to play either side of the ball in college and has the quickness but isn't a burner that most schools are looking for. A consistent 4.6 runner in the 40-yard dash, Booker says he's gotten into the 4.5 range before. Because of that teams will have to watch him play several times to get a true grasp of his ability to play the game. So far just one team has pulled the trigger but Booker says several more are showing interest.
"I have a scholarship from Jacksonville State already," Booker says. "I have been hearing from Auburn, Alabama and most of the SEC. I am also hearing from Marshall, Iowa State and several other big schools. Auburn is my favorite school though and that's where I really want to go."
In addition to his exploits on the football field, Booker also plays both basketball and baseball for Lanett. Last season he helped the basketball team to one of the best seasons in school history as he was a part-time starter at guard for the Panthers.