BRIGHAM CITY — According to his coach, Robbie Gunter, BYU is a natural fit for defensive back prospect Riley Burt.
Burt is a 6-foot-2, 195-pound athlete who stars at both running back and defensive back for Box Elder. His size and speed combination makes him a true "diamond in the rough," according to Gunter.
"BYU got themselves a special athlete whose potential is enormous," Gunter said. "I'm very happy for Riley and his family, because I know BYU is what they all wanted."
Burt was receiving increasing interest from both Utah State and Utah at the time of his commitment.
Burt pledged to BYU Monday after an offer following an unofficial visit to the program and a stellar performance at the program's camp. According to Gunter, Burt has been impressing BYU coaches for a while now.
"He loves going down there, and BYU coaches have done a real good job recognizing his talent and then recruiting him," Gunter said. "They've stayed in constant contact. So no, it didn't come as a surprise to me when they offered."
According to Burt, he grew up liking BYU and Utah almost equally until just after his sophomore year when he had a chance to get to know Coach Bronco Mendenhall.
"He just cares for you more than other coaches," Burt said. "He cares about your well-being off the field and it really drew to me BYU. I think that's the biggest reason I ended up committing there ---- the coaches and also the players. Guys like Jamaal (Williams) is someone I've grown close to along with Preston Hadley, who is now a coach there."
Cougar coaches were in no doubt impressed with Burt's overall speed and size combination. As evidence of his superior speed, Burt clocked a 10.95 100-meter time this past track season.
"His burst-off-the-line is very good as is his vision as a running back," Gunter said. "More than that, he's just a great kid, and it's been a great pleasure for me to be a part of his development. He's going to be a real leader for us this year."
Burt is prepping for his senior season with the Bees and intends to sign his letter of intent for the Cougars as part of the coming 2015 signing class.
Burt will sign alongside Northridge defensive back prospect, and good friend, Dayan Lake.
"Me and Dayan have become great friends and we can't wait to go down there and play on the same team," Burt said.
Most assume Burt will compete with Lake for a spot in BYU's backfield, but they wind up on opposite sides of the football.
"Coaches haven't told me a specific position they want me to play. I may end up playing running back, which is fine with me," Burt said. "Whatever coaches feel it best I'm good with."