February 16, 2011

Taco will be near the top in 2013

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Over the last couple of years, Pickerington (Ohio) Central High School in suburban Columbus has turned into a mini-pipeline for the Ohio State football program. The Buckeyes have kept a close eye on the program and have landed three players (Jamie Wood and Zach Boren in the 2009 class and Jacoby Boren in 2012) from one of Central Ohio's top powers. The Buckeyes may be heading back to Central in the 2013 class as Taco Charlton is one of the top sophomores in the state of Ohio. The 6-foot-7, 240-pound defensive end is already hearing from Ohio State and numerous other programs.

"(The Ohio State coaching staff) asked Jamie Wood about me and about coming to their camp and stuff like that," he said. "They also want me to come down for a practice (in the spring)."

Charlton grew up watching Ohio State football games and with a former teammate on the roster and another one joining the program next year, the Buckeyes have certainly kept the interest of the ultra-talented sophomore.

"I used to always watch them when I was a little kid," he explained. "Especially now with Jamie (Wood) there, it's definitely a school that I will be thinking about and look at."

In addition to Ohio State, schools such as Iowa, LSU, Michigan, Michigan State, Nebraska, and many others have already reached out to the Pickerington Central staff about Charlton who is coming off a sophomore season that saw him steadily improve each week.

"I started to learn the position a little better and get more confidence in what I was doing," he explained. "Towards the end of the season I started doing a lot better and I was able to improve and help my team out more."

As Charlton continues to develop and get closer to reaching his potential, more is going to be expected of him on the football field. The higher expectations will begin this fall as he is planning on seeing some time on the offensive side of the football as well.

"They're going to be working me in a bit this year as a tight end," he said. "I always like defense because I like to hit people but I used to play offense in junior high and growing up I played a lot of receiver and stuff so it won't be anything too different."

This winter, Charlton was a key member of Pick Central's basketball team. Unfortunately, a shoulder injury has cut his season a bit short but playing basketball in the winter is something that Charlton feels is a tremendous benefit come football season.

"Just how you have to work as a team, in both sports you have to work as a team and work together," he explained. "Also, conditioning-wise, (playing basketball) really helps too, and just playing hard. No matter what you're doing you just have to play hard whether you're playing football or basketball."

Charlton is hoping to put together his summer camp schedule once basketball season is officially over and there is a strong chance that Ohio State will be one of the schools he camps at in June.


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