Centers Looks To Be Bigger Spark In 2011

Picture By Matthew Visinsky

Walk-on freshman Larry Centers Jr. knew he wasn't going to hit the field this year for SMU, but it didn't stop the Tatum HS product from going all out in practice each and every week.

Dallas, TX – Walk-on freshman Larry Centers Jr. knew he wasn't going to hit the field this year for SMU, but it didn't stop the Tatum HS product from going all out in practice each and every week.

"All I had to look forward to each day and week was practice. I tried to give everything I could every day, because there was not Saturday for me," said Centers. "Even though they were my teammates, I tried to outwork them and work harder than anyone on the team. Whether it was on the field or in the video room.


Centers is a dark horse to see the field next season(Picture By: Matthew Visinsky)
"I came in and knew I wasn't going to get on the field, but as far as my development, I was very pleased with the progress. I hope better things are yet to come."

The SMU coaching staff was very pleased as well. Centers was praised by Facebook statuses on many occasions from SMU wide receivers coach Jeff Reinebold.

The son of former SFA star and NFL fullback Larry Centers, the slot wide receiver chose to play football at SMU due to the coaching staff.

"Reinebold is one of the coolest guys I have ever met as far as coaches. Plus, Coach Jones has done some amazing things and was once in the league, so you know he is a great coach," said Centers. "It also helped that it was so close that my parents could see me play at any point.

"When I was younger, my dad didn't even want me playing football. So he hasn't pressured me at all...I just try to get as much wisdom as I can from my dad. He knows the ins and outs of every level of football, so when I'm dealing with stuff I can go to him for advice."

The 5-foot-10, 175 pound (already up 10 pounds since arriving to SMU) Centers has plans to get bigger, faster, and stronger this off-season, hoping his body becomes more suited to take big time college hits in the future. But, there is another major thing he wants to accomplish this spring.

"More importantly than getting stronger, I want to get to know the system better. I want to be able to line up and look straight at the defense and know my assignment," said Center. "When you first start in the offense, you are really confused. As time went on, it came more naturally. The more routes you run, you pick it up. But I want to become second nature."

So what was the biggest thing Centers learned this season as a true walk-on freshman?

"You have to take every practice and focus on getting better at something. It might be one thing one day and another thing another day, but you have to get better at something everyday," said the freshman. "When I came in I didn't have a spot, but over time I was able to get more reps because of my hard work. Of course you don't get as many reps as the starters, but you get some time."

It's PonyStampede.com's prediction SMU fans will see big things from Centers before his career on the Hilltop is over.

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