Every week, the Ardmoreite will feature area prep athletes headed into the start of the fall sports season.
Ardmore senior safety/wideout Carter Swanson is back for his third season as starter, hoping to lead the Tigers back to the Class 5A playoffs.
Along with junior middle linebacker Jarred Hall, Swanson (6-foot-3, 190 pounds) was an All-Ardmoreite Super Team selection in 2012. He'll lead a Tiger defense with almost everyone returning in 2013.
Along with being one of the key playmakers on both sides of the ball for the Tigers, Swanson has hit the summer camp circuit hard this offseason, and is receiving attention from schools around the country as one of the state's top recruits.
What will be the key for you guys to return to the playoffs in such a tough district?
Swanson: "I think the key for us will be to just work hard. We have to come in everyday with the right mindset and attitude, along with just playing hard all the time. We've got to know our assignments and be more focused, so that we can just go play instead of think about what we're doing."
While almost everyone was a first-time starter last year, is there a different feel this year because of the experience factor?
Swanson: "It's going to help us, no doubt, since we had a lot of sophomores playing last year. When you return a lot of guys from the past year, it's always a good thing."
How do you take what you've learned throughout your career and use it to lead this team?
Swanson: "I've been around for a while. I don't really say much, I just go out there and play hard and let that be my example."
How much has it helped by having the extra summer workouts?
Swanson: "I think it's helped us a lot. They (Plainview) have some good athletes and it's been fun to play against them."
You're getting looks from schools all across the country. If you would, give us an update on your recruiting.
Swanson: "I've been to Georgia, Duke and Oklahoma State this summer. I attended camps at those schools, and then North Texas, Memphis and Tulsa have also been in the mix."
Follow Carter on Twitter: @wcarterARD