Austin (Tex.) St. Michael's quarterback Reed Carlton came away from his junior season feeling strongly about his team's-and his own-performances on the field.
" We had a really good team and we had a balanced backfield and lots of great receivers, so it really allowed for our team to make the good plays that we did. I think I made better decisions on the field and I think I've matured in a lot of ways in making those decisions, like pulling the ball, throwing the ball, making the right read. Throwing short passes instead of always trying to throw the run ball, decisions like that," he said.
The 5-foot-11, 178-pound believes it's his ability to successfully both run and pass the ball that gives him the advantage on the field.
"I'm more of a dual-threat. My passing and running is definitely a threat for the defense. I think that having a strong arm also really helps me passing-wise. I also have speed," he said.
Carlton, however, has been keeping busy during the off-season, ultimately working toward being in top shape come fall.
"I played basketball and was somehow named All-State, and now I'm playing baseball. I've also been working out a lot with Ben Ortiz, who is our athletic trainer. I've been doing a lot of work with him.
"I want to get bigger, faster, and stronger. I'm working even harder on making the right reads and really trying to understand the offense a lot more. I really want to work on my speed because I know I can get faster and I know that would be a big benefit for me, so I'm working on that," he said.
Though he hasn't had the chance to go to any college Junior Days or camps quite yet, he does have plans to attend a few over the summer.
"Over the summer, I have a couple of camps lined up. I know for sure that North Texas has a camp and I think I'm going to camp at Baylor, too. There is also the Elite 11 quarterback camp that I'm going to do," he said.
There's also one in-state program from which Carlton hopes to hear more.
"Texas State is one of my favorites right now. My brother goes to school there and I really enjoy the campus, and they have good academics. They are a small school, but they are on the verge of getting big.
"I also like that they just moved up to Divison-I, so I think that would be a good opportunity for me to step up and if I can, help them. I really just like the schools in the state of Texas," he said.