UT Martin Football Player Burton Signs Contract

UT Martin Football Player Burton Signs Contract with Canadian Football League Team
Release: 04/09/2008

MARTIN, Tenn. - UT Martin senior Jessie “Juice? Burton says he is taking the first step toward realizing his dream of playing professional football by signing a contract to play for the Calgary Stampeders in the Canadian Football League.

Burton will graduate in May and report to preseason camp in Calgary at the end of May.
“Everybody has to take a first step and this is mine,? Burton said.

Burton played the past two seasons for head coach Jason Simpson and the UT Martin Skyhawks. He helped lead the Skyhawks to the 2006 Ohio Valley Conference championship and their first ever trip to the Football Championship playoffs. In 2007, Burton played wide receiver, cornerback and special teams for the Skyhawks.
As a wide receiver Burton made 17 catches for 415 yards and four touchdowns this past season. On defense he made 23 total tackles, two interceptions and five pass breakups. On special teams Burton returned kicks and punts. He had 19 punt returns for 197 yards. He returned 36 kicks for 825 yards and one touchdown.
Burton has 2,723 all-purpose yards and nine touchdowns. He returned two kickoffs for touchdowns for in 2006. One of those returns, a 100-yard return, tied a school record for the longest return for a touchdown.
“They plan to use me at all three positions,? Burton said.

Burton will join former UT Martin player Marc Calixte on the Calgary roster. Calixte played linebacker at UT Martin from 1999-2002. He was the first player from UT Martin to be drafted by a Canadian Football League team. He was drafted by the Stampeders with their fourth pick in the first round (seventh overall pick) in the 2003 CFL College Draft.

Burton would like to play in the NFL one day, but he realizes this opportunity to play in the CFL is the first step.
“You need to go as far as you can before you quit,? Burton said. “That’s what I am trying to do.?


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