The Courier-Post will highlight an area football player to watch this upcoming season with kickoff rapidly approaching.

Jace Barton

School: Mark Twain

Year: Senior

Position: Running back/linebacker

Height: 6-0

Weight: 185

The stats: Led Tigers with 1,229 rushing yards and 12 touchdowns on 162 carries. Made 34 tackles, including 10 for loss.

Why watch: Barton was part of Mark Twain’s two-headed monster in the backfield along with Logan Perrigo, who both rushed for more than 1,000 yards last fall. Perrigo received 30 more touches than his teammate, but Barton did more with less.

He 7.6 yards per carry and 122.9 per game last season. There’s no doubt both Barton and Perrigo will be valuable to the Tigers’ offense, but Barton is who opposing defenses will key on heavily.