Preseason Check-in: TE Recruit Brandon Barden

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The 2005 season was a dream one for Brandon Barden and the Lincoln County High School varsity football squad. After losing three straight games to start the season, Lincoln County reeled off 12 straight wins and captured a state championship. Barden, who began the season at tight end/wide receiver, moved back to quarterback in game four and was a big reason for his team’s success.

Barden and company are looking for repeat success this season, which begins tonight.

“Our first real game is [tonight],” Barden said. “I’m real excited. We have a bunch of guys back and we’re working hard. Our first scrimmage was pretty exciting. We played the number two ranked team in AA. We played good and beat them 54-13 or something like that. It was a good start for us.”

Barden accounted for about 1,400 yards of total offense last season and is confident heading into his senior year.

“I feel good,” Barden said. “I feel more comfortable as a quarterback. I feel confident. I have a lot of guys that can help me out, which is a good feeling to have.”

A terrific athlete, Barden, who ran a 4.57 in the 40-yard dash at the Nike Camp in Athens (GA) earlier this year, could also see time at wide receiver and/or defensive end this season. He is being recruited by Virginia Tech as a tight end, although the Virginia Tech coaches have mentioned wide receiver as a possibility in recent talks with Lincoln County head coach Larry Campbell.

On the first day of June, the 6-5, 220-pound Barden became Tech’s second commitment of the 2007 recruiting class. He chose the Hokies over offers from Kansas State, Vanderbilt and Wake Forest. The Georgia standout was also being seriously recruited by Clemson and Georgia, among others.

Asked if it has been tough to keep his commitment, Barden answered “It has been tough. There are a lot of Georgia fans around here. As of now, I’m sticking with my commitment to Virginia Tech. Things could change if something happened or something changed there. You never know. But, if everything stays the same, I’ll be at Virginia Tech.”

Barden hopes to visit Tech in the near future – perhaps the very near future.

“I’m going to try to get there in a couple weeks,” Barden said. “I was actually deciding whether or not to go to