With blazing speed and the ability to get outside to break away from the pack helped Tarboro Vikings running back Quentin Roberson gain a lot of his yards this season.
It also helped that Roberson runs the 40-yard dash in 4.3 seconds. He gained 1,960 yards this season and scored 27 touchdowns.
He was named theNCHSAA 2-A Offensive Player of the Game after his 202 yard, two touchdown performance in the state championship game.
With his success this season, Roberson is The Daily Southerner's 2012 All-County Offensive Player of the Year.
"Quentin has been a great player for us and was huge for us this season," Craddock said. "He was one of the kids I was concerned about early on in his career because I didn't know which way he was going to go. He matured a lot over the course of his career and was instrumental for us this season."
Roberson had five games where he rushed for over 200 yards. He missed two games this season with an injury, but when he came back he was re-energized and put on a show.
Roberson didn't see much action in the back field last season, because the Vikings had a lot of players in that position, but he came on this year and exploded from the beginning of the season and never looked back.
"It was rewarding for him during his senior year after he was patient during his junior season," Craddock said. "It was very nice for him to introduce himself to the scene this year and give us more then what we could have asked for out of him."
Roberson introduced himself to the scene as if he was a seasoned veteran who had been on the big stage before. Roberson knew coming into the season he was going to have to be a leader on the offensive side of the ball. In fact, he did that. He carried the load for the Vikings and when it came down to crunch time, Tarboro's coaching staff decided it was Roberson they were going to rely on to get the job done.
"We gave him the rock when we needed big plays," Craddock said. "He worked hard for us and gave us exactly what we wanted from him."
Roberson knew the bar was set high for him this season, because he had big shoes to fill. He was following Todd Gurley and knew if he was going to be productive he was going to have to work extremely hard during the offseason.
"Quentin came in and knew he was going to be the focal point of our offense," Craddock said. "He met our expectations."
The options are open for Roberson to continue his football career and go on to the next level to play. He will probably end up playing in a junior college. With his athletic ability he meets all the requirements. He falls short in other requirements though, but is working to improve on those and possibly advance to the next level and play college football.
"If everything to get him into college was based on just carrying the football it would be easy for him to go to college and play," Craddock said. "We are doing the best we can and Quentin is working hard to improve."
There are two more running backs who dominated for their teams this year that made the All-County team. One was a senior for the SouthWest Edgecombe Cougars, Gerald Hinton and the other was a freshman who shined the entire season at North Edgecombe. Warriors running back Antoine Pittman.
Hinton has been an explosive player for the Cougars for two seasons. He carried the load for them this year and gained 1,629 yards and scored 25 touchdowns. Hinton averaged 135.8 yards per game. He ran the ball 216 times and was the only Cougar running back to run the ball over a 100 times this season.
He also caught 13 passes for 198 yards and scored twice receiving the ball. He also had 205 return yards on kickoffs and 58 return yards on punt returns.
Pittman exploded out of the gates for the Warriors this season. He carried the ball 122 times and gained 812 yards. He scored 12 touchdowns. Pittman averaged 6.6 yards per carry this year.
Pittman started the season at fullback, but after the fourth game of the season, he was moved to the running back spot where he continued to shine for the Warriors.
He impressed the Warriors coaching staff and made a quick name for himself as he emerged on the scene.