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He’s off to a good start. Before coming to Park Center, Burige had played quarterback and nothing else since sixth grade. With a quarterback already in place, Park Center coach Rickey Foggie decided to take advantage of Burige’s athletic abilities by switching him to cornerback.
“It was pretty tough at first,” Burige said. “I’d never played defense at all. I didn’t know the footwork. I didn’t know the concepts. I didn’t know any of it.”
After getting roughly 75 percent of the snaps in the opener last year, Burige started the rest of the way.
It was a tough season for the Pirates — they won only one game — but Burige quickly became comfortable on the defensive side of the ball. He now considers his footwork to be one of his strengths — that, and his speed. He was clocked at 4.47 seconds in the 40-yard dash at a Minnesota Duluth camp this summer.
“I just want to help my team in any way that I can,” said Burige, who might get some reps on offense this fall as either a read-option quarterback or at wide receiver. “I want people to see that you don’t have to be at a great program to have success in football. I kind of have a chip on my shoulder.”