Healthy Parker Ready For 2012 Season

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For most of last season, Statesville (N.C.) played without star starting quarterback Carlis Parker .  Parker, then a junior, missed most of the 2011 season with a torn LCL.  The 6’4″, 185-pound signal caller is now healthy, something that has put a spark into this Statesville squad.

“We’re really excited about this season, especially with getting Carlis Parker back,” Statesville head coach Randall Gusler said.  “He has come back 100-percent.  He looked really good in 7-on-7s this summer.  He played very, very well in the 7-on-7s.  This week, in preseason practice, we have been able to get into the run game also.  He’s shaking the rust off real quick.”

Mentally and physically, the Virginia Tech-bound recruit seems fully recovered from the knee injury.

“I don’t think there are any worries whatsoever.  We have thrown him out at wide receiver a few plays in 7-on-7 to see how he does in the open field.  He made some pretty catches.  I don’t think there is any fear of injury,” Gusler said.  “He seems 100-percent.  I don’t thinking he is even thinking about.  His mind is good.”

A healthy Parker shined as a sophomore, passing for 1,800 yards and rushing for 1,200 more.  The lefty signal caller appears primed for another monster season.

“He’s a dynamic athlete,” Gusler said of Parker.  “We want the ball in his hands every play.  His sophomore year was a big year.  Last year, he got injured.  This year, he is doing things so much faster and quicker.  When he was a sophomore, he was a 4.55-second kid in the 40.  Right now, he is hitting the 4.4s.  He’s even faster than he was as a sophomore.  That’s why we’re so excited.”

Gusler says it has “really been enjoyable” coaching Parker, whose character matches his ability on the football field.

“He’s such a dynamic athlete, but the thing that impresses me more is his character,” Gusler said.  “He is a role model in school.  He works extremely hard.  He got three As and a B last semester, and he was mad about the B.  He wanted four As.  So he is very focused in the classroom.  He’s focused on what’s happening in life.  As a freshman, he was so much more