Deante Burton, a senior running back/defensive back at Manhattan High School, gave his commitment to Kansas State. The 6-foot-2, 205-pound athlete isn’t sure yet on which position he’ll play on the next level, but for now, he’s just happy to become a part of the Wildcat program.
"Last Wednesday Sean Snyder called my Mother and said they were offering me a full scholarship," said Deante Burton. "I called him back right away and accepted."
Burton had been hearing from schools like Oklahoma State, UCLA, and USF, but said he knew what direction he’d go in if the Wildcat staff extended an offer.
"Every time I go I get a family vibe," Burton said. "Everybody knows everybody there. It’s my hometown. I just live down the street, so I know I’ll have a great support system in place. I always knew I wanted to play for Kansas State it was just a matter of playing the waiting game for the offer. When I received it I didn’t hesitate to commit."
There are a variety of things the staff can do with Burton. He has played all the positions in the secondary and running back in high school, but they may start him out with Michael Smith, the receivers coach.
"I’m coming in as an athlete," Burton said. "Originally I was recruited for defense. I’m willing to play wherever they put me. I’m flexible. Coach Smith helped out in recruiting me. I think I’m going to start out working with the wide receivers and see what happens. I just want to show the coaches I’m willing to do anything I can to work and contribute as a freshman player."
The Manhattan Indians lost in the 2nd round of the Kansas 6A playoffs for the third year in a row with an upset loss to Derby. It was a tough defeat for a team that has gone 21-2 the past two seasons. Despite a mid-season injury to Burton he still found ways to be productive.
"It was in the sixth game of the season I broke my thumb," Burton said. "I kind of just wrapped it up and kept on going. We did a lot of jet sweeps after that. In the off-season I did a lot of speed and strength conditioning which really paid off. My improved speed was huge in being able to make plays on both sides of the ball."
Living in Manhattan has afforded Burton the opportunity to see his future team in action more often than most recruits. He’s taken advantage of that by attending most of the Wildcats' home games this season.
"Coach Snyder has them playing really well, said Burton. "It goes back to the family aspect of the program. When a team doesn’t revolve around one or a few individuals but a plays together as one, that’s a great team. He’s been able to get that with hard work and team unity."
Currently Burton is playing Vcrsity basketball. He plans on running track in the spring to help his footwork. His best time in the 40-yard dash is a 4.48 run at his school. He wore No. 8 for the Indians for head coach Joe Schartz.