Manson A True Team Player

Published: Friday, January 16, 2004 at 3:10 p.m.
Last Modified: Friday, January 16, 2004 at 3:10 p.m.

This weekend's visit to Gainesville may be the finishing touch for talented Tuscaloosa (Ala.) Hillcrest tailback Markus Manson, a Florida commitment since the last week of October 2003.

While rumors have sprung up about Manson's sudden interest in other schools, Hillcrest coach Mike Barber said the star tailback should fulfill his commitment to the Gators.

"He's committed to Florida," Barber said. "That commitment still holds as far as I know."

Barber said Manson particularly liked the coaching staff at Florida when he attended a football camp in Gainesville last summer.

The 6-foot, 190-pound Manson runs a 4.4 40-yard dash. The Alabama native is a powerful runner and not just a small tailback with excellent speed.

Along with his physical tools, Manson is very humble and does not put himself before the team. Barber said Manson always credits his offensive linemen for his success.

"He knows it it weren't for those guys, he wouldn't be getting the yards," Barber said. "He does not act like that prima-donna tailback that you get sometimes. He's a team player."

Florida may be getting a true workhorse in Manson, as his work ethic shined in football practice. Manson has not missed a voluntary summer workout in four years.

"He totally sacrifices everything for the team," Barber said. "First one to be dressed at practice every day, first one in the weight room. He's one of those kind of guys."

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