"I know when I first got there nobody really lifted weights. Keion Wright and J.C. Morrison and those guys did, but they kind of worked out on their own," Walton said.
Wright is Capital's all-time rushing leader and Morrison was the runner-up for the 2010 Huff Award, given to the state's top defensive player.
"They did their thing, but there was never a team or family concept to it," Walton said. "We really built that into the program. To be honest, I'm looking to see [sophomore offensive lineman] Savion Brown to take over as the leader along that line after I'm gone. This year I tried to bring him along to become a leader for next year."
Capital opened in 1989 as a consolidation of Charleston and Stonewall Jackson high schools. However, it was not until 2013 that the Cougars were able to lift weights in their own facility at University of Charleston Stadium, their home field. It was after a first-round playoff loss in 2012 that Walton and his team increased their push to become more physical.
"In the Musselman game we got kind of bullied," he said. "That was a real big wake-up call to me and a few of my teammates. The Monday after that game we went up to the YMCA and started lifting, then when we got the weight room finished at Laidley Field [UC Stadium] it just took off from there."
Capital gave up an average of 3.0 rushing yards per carry and 4.8 yards per pass attempt in 2013. Walton was the team's leading tackler, averaging more than nine stops per game. He also led the Cougars in sacks and tackles for loss.
Walton said he has not chosen his college destination, but is being recruited by Virginia Military Institute and Morehead State as well as a host of Mountain East Conference schools. He will be honored at the Victory Awards Dinner hosted by the WVSWA in May.