BENTONVILLE (KFSM ) - When you watch football at Bentonville, you know you're going a strong run game.
"Sometimes around here, we like to claim that we're Running Back U because of the backs that we've had and the success that they've had," head coach Jody Grant explained.
Nobody has embraced that mentality more in recent years than Preston Crawford.
"My sophomore year, they told me to step up in playoffs around this time, so I was like okay - I'll play running back for the rest of my high school career so I just got to this point," the senior remembered.
Starting in the postseason as an underclassmen, Crawford has grown into a key playmaker that the Tigers know they can trust.
"I think he makes certain calls easier because of the confidence you have in him," Coach Grant mentioned. "Say it's a short yardage and you've got to get a first down, you feel very good about giving him the football."
Quarterback Ben Pankau agreed. "If we get to third and three, I know I can turn around and hand the ball to him and expect a first down and keep the drive rolling and get us some more points."
The points from Crawford come early and often. This year, he's racked up more than 1,000 rushing yards and 22 touchdowns.
"I think his numbers speak volumes about what he is and who he is," Coach Grant said.
The senior accounts his development to the program he's grown up dreaming of playing for.
"Bentonville is basically success around here," Crawford emphasized. "Bentonville's like an NFL team around the state. Me being here is really really fun and I enjoy it so much."
Now he hopes to close out his high school career by doing what nobody on this Bentonville roster has ever done - bring home a state title.
Bentonville will host North Little Rock in a quarterfinal matchup on Friday. Kickoff is scheduled for 7:00 PM.