Zach Bourque (North Vermilion High School) is a sleeper prospect at strong safety who is determined to turn heads with a productive senior season. As a junior, Bourque (6-0, 165) was named first-team all-district after leading his team with 81 tackles.
Bourque, who recorded seven sacks and 12 tackles for loss last year, specializes in blitzing and stopping plays behind the line of scrimmage - and he has the speed to do it.
"We tested in the 40-yard dash at school last week and I ran a 4.59 and a 4.51," Bourque said. "I want to play college ball anywhere and I've been training hard. Last time, I ran a 4.63. I'm not hearing from any colleges, but I would like to hear from Southeastern, Louisiana-Lafayette, McNeese St., Henderson State, Louisiana-Monroe, and Louisiana College."
The Patriots are in a bit of a transition period after losing longtime head coach Tank Lotief to Kaplan.
"The new coach (Tommy Byler) is very organized," Bourque said. "He has a detailed plan for us on everything. He has a schedule with a list of what we're going to do every day from here on out.
"I can relate to him because he was a receiver when he played. He's going to put me on offense some this year. He's going to put me at slot and we'll run some bubble screens and hitches out of that. I'm also going to play some tailback in short-distance situations, as well as some tight end too. On defense, I'll play strong safety again and also I'll be at linebacker on occasion - plus I'm the kicker."
Bourque is currently a starting outfielder on the North Vermilion baseball team.
"I play center and I'm hitting about .275," he said. "I have a double and three triples with six steals. I have a 3.5 grade point average and I'm going to take the ACT in June.
"Last season in football, we lost in the first round and we could have done better than that. We didn't have the want and the heart. We have all of our linemen back on both sides of the ball this year and they want it. We lose a quarterback who was made of nails, but we have a new QB who can chunk it. We'll run a variety of formations: the I, the shotgun. (Former McNeese QB) Derrick Fourroux is going to be out there helping our quarterback and our offense."