When it comes down to a college decision, don't expect Burton to look solely at the football side.
"I take academics pretty seriously,'' said Burton, who is 6-foot-5, 235 pounds. "It's the most important thing. If I commit somewhere and anything happens with injuries, and if I can't play football, I have to do something.
"That's really the whole thing about it, get a free education and set yourself up to succeed as a man and support your family. My main goal is the NFL, but if that doesn't work out, it's smart to get a free top-of-the-line education. That's going to factor into a school I choose.''
Burton's knowledge of Rutgers, to this point, is limited to the basics.
"It's in the Big East, and I know they've been recruiting Venice High School a lot,'' he said. "And I know Ray Rice went there.''
There are family bloodlines with Purdue. His grandfather is Lawrence Burton, who played for the Boilermakers and was an Olympic sprinter for the U.S. National Team.
But that appears to be nothing more than an interesting factoid when it comes to Clay Burto's recruitment.
"It is a cool thing, but I'm not going to base (the decision) on it,'' Burton said. "The decision is about me, and not anybody else.''
Burton, who doubles as a tight end, helped the Indians to a 9-2 mark last season.
"I developed a good motor,'' he said. "I have a pretty good first step off the edge and I always figure out how to stop the run, and I have a mean streak, and always give an effort and don't stop until the whistle blows.
"I kind of take it as disrespect if the offense is trying to score on me. It's kind of like the Hulk, and it just clicks and I start messing people up.''
However, off the field Burton's demeanor is cordial, and his answers are thoughtful.
His stated goal is to play in the NFL, but if that doesn't work out he knows having options are vital.
"My plan,'' he said, "is to major in education and come back to Venice High School, or any high school, and be a teacher and coach football. Just try to help the community.''