BURROUGHS HIGH -- Burroughs High football player David Brooks has
never doubted his athletic ability would earn him an opportunity to
play at the college level.
However, the 5-foot-9, 150-pound senior also realized his size
would likely deter some collegiate coaches from recruiting him. All
he needed was a coach who would look past his unassuming stature and
take a chance on the skillful multipurpose player.
He found that person in Weber State University Coach Jerry
Graybeal, as Brooks has signed a letter of intent to play for the
“We are excited about having David with our program,” said
Graybeal, who has guided the program for five seasons. “David has a
lot of athletic ability and we were impressed with the high-school
films we saw of him.
“More than that, he also seems like a very nice young man. He
represented himself, his family and his school very well.”
Brooks said he made the decision to play for Weber State -- a
Division IAA school in Ogden, Utah -- after taking a recruiting trip
to the campus.
Brooks said he is indebted to Coach Graybeal for giving him the
opportunity to continue to play at a higher level.
“I know a lot of other coaches didn’t want to take a chance on me
because of my size,” Brooks said. “I was just hoping a college would
at least consider me and give me a chance to show what I can do.
“I’m very happy about playing for Weber State. I want to do well
for them, and to show Coach [Graybeal] that they made the right
decision about signing me. I really have something to prove.”
Brooks, who played running back, wide receiver, quarterback and
defensive back for Burroughs last season, will likely play the
cornerback position for the Wildcats.
Weber State will have a talented running-back duo next season, led
by 6-2, 200-pound junior Nick Choumos, who rushed for 874 yards in
174 carries and had 10 touchdowns in 2002.
Graybeal said the team should also get a boost from 6-0, 230-pound
running back James Samuel, a transfer from Utah State. Samuel, who
was an All-CIF Southern Section star at Pasadena Muir in 1999, was an
all-conference player at Pasadena City College in 2000, after
redshirting the 1999 season at San Diego State.
“David realizes that he is probably going to have to wait at least
two seasons before he can get a shot at playing running back.”
Burroughs Coach Keith Knoop said. “But if he puts on a little weight
and continues to improve, I think he’s got a good shot.”
Graybeal said he isn’t worried about Brooks catching on playing
defensive back full time.
“It’s not like David hasn’t played on the defensive side of the
ball before,” he said. “Usually, players with a lot of athletic
ability have no problem adapting to a new position. We know David
will do fine.”
Last season, Weber State struggled at times, going 2-9 -- 1-6 in t
Big Sky Conference. The team has a 12-game road losing streak.
“We’re still not done recruiting,” Graybeal. “So we are hoping to
pick up a few more players and strengthen our team.”
Last season for Burroughs, Brooks saw his share of work. A
second-team All-Foothill League pick at running back, he rushed for
795 yards in 119 carries for eight touchdowns. Along with catching 23
balls for 350 yards and three touchdowns, he was also 11 for 19
passing for 235 yards and three touchdowns. He had one interception
at defensive back.
In all but one game for Burroughs (5-6), Brooks had at least 200
Brooks is a two-time Burbank Leader All-Area first-team honoree,
last season as an all-purpose player and in 2001 as a defensive back.
Along with being a fine football player, Brooks has also succeeded
in the classroom and has a 3.3 grade-point average.