Grizzly runner set to become a Viking
After spending part of each of the last three seasons running over one set of Vikings (Oakmont), Granite Bay’s DeVaunte Bolton is now set to become one.
The Viking helmet the Grizzly ball carrier will slip on belongs to Portland State University. After flirting with Nevada-Reno last spring, the 5-foot-10, 195-pound Bolton settled on Portland State after a three-week courting cycle leading up to signing day last week.
The discussions with Reno actually played a role in the eventual landing spot for Bolton as former Nevada defensive coordinator has been hired to lead the Vikings’ program.
“We knew about DeVaunte at Reno,” Burton said. “Once we got up here, my recruiting coordinator, Dave Brown, followed up and we were able to get him.”
Burton is instilling an offense in the Pacific Northwest similar to the one run at Reno. Both he and Bolton’s high school coach see the running back as a great fit for the pistol offense.
“The running back’s responsibilities in the pistol are different than they were in the run-and-shoot so we had to bring in some guys who fill that role better,” Burton said. “DeVaunte is exactly the running back we were looking for in this system. He is smart and he has speed and good size.”
“The new coaching staff was extremely happy DeVaunte was still available,” said Granite Bay coach Ernie Cooper. “They can see him in that offense. He has a huge upside and is just scratching the surface of his potential. This is one of the fastest young men in California.”
Bolton is one of 20 new recruits headed to the Viking program. Cooper believes that Portland State has picked up a gem.
“He is really going to flourish in college,” Cooper said. “He has more of a college build and he is extremely talented. Portland State’s coaches are going to look like the smartest guys in America.”
Family may have played a role in Bolton’s decision, as he has family in the area. His father and uncle also attended Portland State.
As Burton looks to build a program with a football team that went 2-9 a year ago, he is looking to Bolton as one of the building blocks.
“With his skills, he has a chance to play here right away,” Burton said. “He is just the kind of person we want representing Portland State.”
5-foot-10, 195 pounds
Running back, Portland State
Last season at Granite Bay: 132 carries, 869 yards, 9 TDs
Interesting fact: Tested as the “strongest man” on the Grizzlies in the weight room
Other sports: SFL 200-meter champion his junior year
College plans: Major in Sociology