Two-Way Standout Close to Decision

Bayside Academy's Jonathan Walton will choose between the Tigers and Gamecocks. This report includes offensive and defensive video highlights featuring the versatile senior.

Daphne, Ala.--Bayside Academy coach Phil Lazenby says the college team that signs his two-way standout performer, Jonathan Walton, will like what the high school senior does on the football field in the coming years.

Walton, a 6-1, 238-pounder at Bayside, has narrowed his choices to Auburn and South Carolina. He took an official visit to check out the Tigers last weekend and had previously taken an official visit to South Carolina.

Lazenby says he believes Walton is closing in on making his college choice and will have a decision before signing day on Wednesday.

"I talked to him and he has got a very, very difficult decision," the coach points out. "You can't go wrong with either school because both schools have outstanding football programs and the coaches are great on both sides. He knows that."

Auburn is recruiting Walton to play offense while South Carolina likes Walton at linebacker.

"I do believe he can play on either side of the ball in college like he did for us," Lazenby says. "His senior year I had some kids in the backfield who were adequate as runners, but I didn't have anybody who fit the middle linebacker role. I asked him if he would play middle linebacker and he, of course, was all for it and said that was fine."

Primarily a defensive player during the 2012 season, Walton made 122 tackles. In limited playing time on offense he carried the ball 40 times for 401 yards.

"Sometimes I second-guess myself by doing that because I personally believe he is one of the top running backs in the state of Alabama," Lazenby says. "I truly believe that. I have been coaching a long time at every level--6A, 5A, 3A and 2A and he is as good as I have coached."

"He ran the ball 40 times as a senior," Lazenby notes. "I should have run him 140 times."

Lazenby says that Walton consistently runs a 4.5 40-yard dash so his combination of size and speed makes him an effective player on both sides of the line of scrimmage.

Whoever signs the Bayside Academy senior will be adding a good person, the coach adds. "He is a very good kid, He is a good student and well liked on campus. He smiles a lot and is very conscientious. He is a good football player and a good person."

Auburn is recruiting Walton as a H-back/fullback who would be used as a runner, receiver and blocker. "He could play running back, fullback, H-back and he could be a receiver because he has great hands," Lazenby says.

"He has got a lot of talent," Lazenby notes Lazenby, who says Walton should continue to develop at the next level. "I think when he gets to college he will be a better college player than he was in high school," the coach says.

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