A busy recruiting summer at Lake Charles College Prep has produced a pair of commitments this week, with offensive lineman Reginald Burks choosing Lamar while defensive back Joe Ward is staying in town, pledging to play at McNeese.
Burks chose the Cardinals over McNeese, Northwestern State, Grambling and Marshall.
Ward chose McNeese over Grambling.
Burks, 6-2 and 275 pounds. plays tackle at LCCP but may move inside to guard at the next level.
“I like the fans over there, the coaches and the city of Beaumont. I really believe in (offensive line coach/offensive coordinator) Patrick Covington. He talks about how hard the linemen work there and he comes from Coastal Carolina, where they had a great o-line. Beaumont is a great location, I wanted to move away from Lake Charles, but not too far.”
Burks said he relishes the physical play along the line and is working to become more athletic.
“I think physicality is my strength,” he said. “When I run block, it’s all pancakes. I’m working on my footwork and my speed, I’d like to lose a little weight and start using my hips more.”
Ward can line up at corner, in the slot or at safety. He said McNeese is eyeing him at one of its three safety spots.
“I am getting experience at every spot so I can be better prepared in college,” he said. “McNeese safeties coach Willie Mack Garza said he could see me playing at any of their safety spots — weak safety, down safety or free safety. I like coming down and covering a slot receiver, getting into the running game or playing deep at free safety. I think versatility is my biggest strength. I can play any position in the secondary. I think leadership is another strength.”
Ward said the McNeese staff made his decision an easy one.
“The coaches showed a lot of love and interest and made me feel like family,” he said. “It is real close so I felt like it would be a great decision.”
Ward said he hopes to cap his career with another long playoff run after helping the Blazers reach the Class 3A semifinals last year.
“Bringing a state championship to Prep is all I can think about,” he said. “We are grinding and working for it. We are like a family, we can laugh and joke, but when it comes to work, we put in that hard work. There’s never a dog day.”
Prep now has four players committed to play in college, with Burks and Ward joining offensive lineman Jalyn Easton (McNeese) and receiver Braylen Walker (Rice). Three more Blazers, running back Trevonte Citizen, receiver Keshlon Jackson and defensive back Curley Reed, hold numerous Power 5 offers.
Prep now has four players committed to play in college. Three more Blazers hold numerous Power 5 offers.