November 27, 2022

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The Gadget Guy: Rougher junior will find himself in multiple uses this fall | Sports

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His role, back again then, was easy, as was the objective.

As a middle-schooler, Muskogee’s Anthony Watson was a featured working back, scoring 20-25 touchdowns a yr, and started his higher school occupation on the varsity level as a freshman.

Past 12 months came a substantial enhance in playing time, but a yr of discovering, and a yr of adjustment.

These stats? Restricted. Two-hundred 30-9 yards dashing, two touchdowns, but 425 yards acquiring, three touchdowns. 

The 6-foot, 220-pound Watson has progressed, and is nonetheless evolving, into the soccer case in point of the Swiss Military Knife.

He may possibly line up at managing again.

Or tight stop. 

Or extensive receiver. 

And then there is the other side of the football.

On protection, actively playing a hybrid edge location labeled Rougher, he’d line up as a defensive stop, or at instances, drop back again into coverage as a linebacker style, and can even change to safety.

“It’s kind of a large amount, learning the plays at one placement, then an additional situation,” Watson mentioned, referring specially to offense.  “But I have not experienced any issue with it.

He could tackle 20 touchdowns a year carrying out what he applied to, but he’s a gadget dude.

“Swiss Army knife? That’s a really superior description for him,” reported Roughers head mentor Travis Hill. “And we want to use all of his applications.”

Watson desires to increase his soccer everyday living over and above significant university and he sees his most effective tools largely as a jogging back again.

“From my top (6-1), I really don’t see myself as a tight finish and I even now require to create as a defensive participant, but if not operating back at the up coming amount, perhaps a receiver,” he said.

Hill just knows the junior is an offensive weapon, period.

“From a defensive aspect, when I seem out there and know you’ve acquired to get into particular factors and I see him coming on as a limited end, I know it’s for a purpose and I have to staff that (defensively),” Hill said. “Anthony’s not going in on that set because he’s never coming off the field. There is a whole lot of a number of sets there with a person dude you can quickly get in to.”

Alongside the line, Watson brings some intangibles formulated by means of practical experience, versatility and character.

“He grew as a blocker previous 12 months on the perimeter and downfield although actively playing receiver,” Hill explained. “He’s 220 pounds and blocking corners, persons that he is greater than but just as athletic. When he found that skill and took pleasure in it, he bought greater and greater — as a sophomore.”

Watson embraces getting a blocking receiver.

“Before I was employed to overrunning my assignment, but I have slowed down and gotten improved holding onto my blocks for a extended time,” he stated.

That physicality will arrive in handy with wildcat deals on the purpose line. 

“Don’t hesitate to print that,” Hill claimed. “He will obtain himself in that package.”

And in that, Watson will have the ball in his arms with a opportunity for touchdowns, which is what he would like anyway.

“My purpose has changed, but I’m extra (varied) and am also in a place of remaining a leader,” Watson claimed. “I’m Ok with being that person.

“Even if I’m not a functioning back, there is tactics I can work on as a restricted conclusion or extensive receiver. Catching and then tucking following the catch, and jogging in the open up discipline. It’s all component of it possibly way, even as a running back out of the backfield.”

Then there is the character concern.

Watson is grounded in it, many thanks to his moms and dads, Otis and Heidi and an older sister who has carved out her own fame. Elexis Watson was the Phoenix’s Female Athlete of the Year as a senior and went on in university to be a key element of a nationwide championship in softball at Rogers State this spring.

“I acquired to thank all of them for holding me in line and things,” Watson stated.

And it’s discovered by other individuals.

“Coaches who have seen him and get in touch with me to communicate about him all say he’s a excellent child,” Hill reported. “Good football coaches still care about that intangible, and it can go 100 miles. Then you bought a child with talent, and you’re not heading to get school coaches conversing about you until you have that to start.

“He’s a chief who not only requires it but does it. It was difficult for him to do that as a sophomore. That is not the circumstance now.”

At concern is wherever he will finally be recruited to perform.

“In the extensive operate, the way he is currently being utilised will be a enormous benefit for him and we’ll use it to our advantage not only for what we do but also to provide the kid to coaches,” Hill stated. “I believe by the stop of this yr we’ll have some fascinating conversations about the matters that will open up to him and we’ll have a much better concept what these coaches are thinking.”

In the meantime, the junior is contemplating of  championships.

“I noticed my sister acquire and how happy she was,”  he said. “I want that experience. I will need to even the loved ones score.”

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