January 13, 2013

Radford, a true dual-threat

Wake Forest commitment and Charlotte (NC) Country Day quarterback Michael Radford's senior season was cut short when he sustained a concussion, forcing him to miss the 24-14 state semifinal loss to Providence Day.

Radford, who is rated as a two-star recruit by Rivals.com, displayed dual-threat ability by completing 78-159 passes for 1,625 yards and 21 touchdowns to seven interceptions, and rushing 110 times for 707 yards and seven touchdowns to lead the Buccaneers to a 9-2 record.

"I definitely improved on becoming a leader, because I was a senior," Radford said. "We didn't have many seniors on our team, and I just had to step up. We had a lot of younger wide receivers who hadn't really played varsity and they all stepped up a lot, but the offense that we have is really timing-wise and you really have to know what you're doing in order to succeed in our offense, so I had to help them out a lot and get them together and have little study groups and try and really be a leader in order to succeed with our offense."

"I also improved my footwork. At the beginning of the year it wasn't awful. I really focused on that, because it's not all upper body strength that you want. It's the footwork and the hips that you really get that power through and I feel like I worked really hard on that."

Wake Forest passing game coordinator and quarterbacks coach Tom Elrod recruited Radford for the Demon Deacons.

"Coach Elrod came to my house about a month ago and we took him out to have a good dinner and to spend some quality time together and my parents and I and my brother and him, we talked a lot," Radford said. "My parents asked about every question. He was happy with that."

"He came to the Christian game, the one that we ended up losing and he said that he saw everything that he wanted to see [and] I'm the perfect guy for him [and] he's really glad he got me and he's really looking forward to working with me, because he likes my speed a lot. He really thinks I can play he tells me. I'm excited to play for him."

The 6-foot-3 and 190-pound Radford, who committed to the Deacs Thursday, June 14, will make his official visit to Wake Forest Friday, Jan. 18.

"I've been calling, texting Cory [Helms], Josh [Harris] and Tyree [Harris]," Radford said. "I've been talking to a lot of these guys and we have a chat on Facebook. We've been talking through that. I'm really excited for this class. I think it's a really good class."

Country Day's offense is similar to Wake's spread attack in that primarily employs one back, multiple receivers, quick screens and deep throws with the run mixed in.

"I do think [I'll be able to quickly learn Wake's offense]," Radford said. "It's obviously going to take a little bit for me to learn all of the signals and the plays and I'm sure defensive coverages are probably a lot different in college, but I do think I'll catch on quick and hopefully be able to compete and play."

"I'm throwing as much as I can. I'm working out almost every day, and I'm just trying to eat as much food as I can. I set a goal for myself. I told myself I want to be at least 200 pounds when I get to Wake Forest, so I think I can do that. I just want to be prepared and have my body prepared, so I can go up there and compete."

He will enroll at Wake in July for summer school and pre-season workouts.

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