Western Pa athlete believes his future is at DE

After finishing up a stellar junior season on the hardwood, which saw him average 22.1 points per game and good enough to place him 18th overall in The WPIAL, DE Mike Burkett (6-5, 220, 4.68) is getting set for his first season as a member of the Laurel High School track and field team.

"It's something I want to do. I think it will get me in better shape for football," said Mike Burkett.

Burkett is planning on running the 100 and 300 high hurdles. During his junior campaign, Mike was selected the Tri-County North All-Section 1st team as a TE, and to the 2nd Team as a DE.

So what position does Burkett see himself playing in college?

"Most of the schools that are recruiting me, are recruiting me as a DE."

The schools that Burkett has been hearing from include Iowa, Pittsburgh, Notre Dame, and Syracuse. Early favorites for the Spartan standout are Pittsburgh, Penn State, Notre Dame, Syracuse, and Iowa. Burkett has plans to attend junior day at Notre Dame on April 3rd. He has been to Pittsburgh's first junior day program, which was held March 6th.

So how did he like it?

"It was real nice. I got to learn a lot about the program. I got to watch the basketball team play against Villanova. I had been to ‘The Pete' before, so I knew what it was like."

Burkett is active in the AAU basketball circuit during the summer. He plays for the Butler Cubs. The Cubs are coached by Dick Hartung, who happens to be the father of another prominent recruit from Western PA, Nate Hartung.

One of Burkett's favorite players hails from Pitt and another grew up not far from Pittsburgh.

"I like Larry Fitzgerald. I love his attitude. I also like Jason Taylor of the Miami Dolphins."

Taylor played his high school ball at Woodland Hills and then went on to the University of Akron.

Burkett has a maximum bench press of 300lbs and a GPA of 2.5. He was slated to take his SATs this past weekend.

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