Hooten will camp at Florida Saturday

You may have never heard his name, but according to a few coaches I have talked to, you will. Montverde Academy running back Tirrek Hooten hasn't played a lot of football, but when he has he performed at a high level. With the chance to start and earn a lot of playing time this year as a junior, Hooten promises to have a big year. He will camp at Florida on Saturday.

At 6-foot and 180 pounds, Tirrek Hooten looks more like 200. He is a well built bully if a running back that has enough quickness not to take on the big hits in the pocket and enough speed to get outside quickly.

The modest running back can play both ways for Montverde, but he will spend most of his time on offense. As a sophomore, Hooten never started a game, but he was good enough to put the ball in the end zone 10 times in ten games without being the main ball carrier.

This year, that will change. He knows more of what he is doing and Hooten looks to have a good year doing it. He really just wants to get on the field and help his team.

"I work hard at whatever position the coach has me at," he said. "I don't like slacking off because it makes the coaches look bad. I just like doing my job.

"I play like a NICKEL type position on defense, but most schools like me as a running back."

Hooten visits Gainesville Saturday for the Will Muschamp Football Camp on the University of Florida campus. For him, it is all about getting better at this point.

"I just want to get better in my technique," Hooten said. If I can improve in that I will be happy. I just want to be a standout player in my junior and senior year. I know if I improve my technique I can be better than most running backs."

Academics have become very important to Hooten and that is something he will certainly hear about when on campus Saturday. Transferring into Montverde Academy is not an easy thing, but he has made the schooling a big part of who he is now.

My mom is really serious about academics," he said. A friend knew about Montverde Academy. I didn't think I could get in, but I talked to the Head Master and he was real nice. I got in and now my mom is real happy that I am here and I am doing well in my academics."

No offers yet for the 2016 running back, but even two years away from graduating college coaches are starting to notice.

"I have talked to a couple so far, no offers yet," he said of the college coaches that come by. "The Tulane and Florida Atlantic coaches like me. They said they will be watching me."

We will catch up with Hooten after the camp visit this week, so stay tuned.

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