South Aiken quarterback transitions to tight end

SOUTH AIKEN, SC -- There is a very clear distinction between skill players and linemen on the football field. Weight, speed, and agility are three of the main factors that determine where someone will play on the field. The closest thing to a hybrid of all those skill sets is a tight end.

Just a season ago, South Aiken's Jesse Sanders was calling plays as a quarterback. Now, he's on the line making blocks and occasionally catching passes.

"It's definitely just a whole 'nother mindset being in the trenches, being down there with the o-linemen," said Sanders. "It's a lot more physical than normal. You know it's a lot less selfless which I'm fine with. I think at the end of my junior year I was about 220-225 and now I'm about 240-241 around that area."

The former quarterback is now spending the year as South Aiken's tight end. He's also been a receiver, but head coach Chris Hamilton thinks he's found his home.

"I think we've definitely found his niche at tight end/h," said Hamilton. "We're excxited about how far he's progressed as far as a blocker. He's always had good ball skills. As far as how he's progressed as a blocker we're excited about that."

Anyone playing a new position may go through some growing pains. Changing mindsets, style of play, and physicality is no easy task. So far, Hamilton has yet to see any signs of growing pains for the senior.

"Well if there are, he ain't showing them. I mean he's done an excellent job of stepping in there and fitting the mold and he's super aggressive and he's an athlete. When you have athletes, it's easy to coach them."

Sanders has received a number of offers to play at the next level. He's still got time to make his decision and with a strong senior year, he'll likely see even more.