Burns Growing into Leadership Role with Cy Falls, Colleges Taking Notice

Photo courtesy of Kaleb Burns

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Kaleb Burns is set to be in a new position for his senior season at Cypress Falls. 

His view will still look the same from his linebacker position, but how he goes about his game may look a little different. 

Burns is a 6-foot, 210-pound linebacker from Cy Falls High School in Houston. 

With Cy Falls graduating more than 40 seniors this past season, Burns will have to step into a leadership role. It’s a role unfamiliar to him, but one he is prepared to embrace. 

“It’s new to me,” Burns said. “We always had leaders. I’ve never been the type to scream or talk to everybody. I’ve never been that type of guy, really. I just play. But I have to be a leader now.” 

The Eagles finished 8-3 and made it to the 6A Division II State Playoffs. 

Burns led the Eagles with 6.6 tackles per game. He totaled 73 tackles, six sacks, three quarterback hurries, two pass deflections and a 49-yard interception. 

He had the type of season Cy Falls would expect from a leader. His coaches, teammates, and other parents in the program hope he can be a leader in the future, and know he can fulfill it. 

“I heard from a lot of people that I’m going to be that guy come my senior year,” Burns said. “I’m one of the only returners on the team. I’ve heard it from parents, coaches, of course. So yeah, I’ve heard it, and really learned to take on that role.” 

Burns is certainly in a position to occupy that leadership role. He currently holds 12 Division 1 offers. He’s in the most contact with Texas Tech, Baylor and Houston, where he visited for Junior Day. He hopes to visit Florida and Tennessee this spring. 

The junior linebacker has had some early practice in his new leadership role. Within the Cy Falls program, the team has groups for practices and how they operate as a team. Burns is a leader of his group, and that’s allowed him to practice being more vocal. 

One of Burns’ biggest mentors in this process has been Trey Morris, Cy Falls’ 2024 starting running back. 

Morris is Cy Falls’ all-time leading rusher and is committed to Army. He’s become a household name within the program, and Burns looks to carry himself a lot like Morris. 

“I feel like he’s good at staying humble. Always acting the same, really, not really changing or what not. I feel like he was the same guy even before he was D1,” Burns said. 

Another big-time recruit Burns has learned from is star LSU linebacker, Harold Perkins Jr. 

Perkins was a Freshman All-American at LSU in the 2022 season, and totaled 75 tackles along with 5.5 sacks, three forced fumbles, six pass deflections and an interception his sophomore season. 

He was a part of the Class of 2022, where he played at Cypress Park High School, who plays Cy Falls during the regular season. Burns uses Perkins as inspiration for how he came from Cypress and made an impact right away at a premier college program. 

“It’s for sure been inspiring, especially because he did so well as a freshman and sophomore,” Burns said. “It shows that I can do the same thing in a way. So it plays a big factor.” 

The new leadership role is something Burns isn’t used to. Leadership may be an overwhelming trait to take on for any player.  

But Burns is starting to learn it, and he’s starting to like it. He knows there is still work to be done, and he knows that in his senior season, his teammates will be looking to him. 

“I’m starting to like it,” he said. “I’m starting to know more of what I’m saying now, not get nervous. I’m starting to get in the groove of it now, I guess you can say. I know I’m going to have to continue being a leader, so I’m just working on that.”

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