Receiver Playing Catch Up

Auburn, Ala.--Chris Slaughter admits he was going through one of the most frustrating times of his life this summer while in academic limbo, waiting to get final approval from Auburn University, the SEC and the NCAA Clearinghouse to play football for Coach Tommy Tuberville's Tigers.

However, on Monday he got the word he was hoping to hear that he was cleared and is now running full speed ahead trying to play catch up with other members of the 2007 Auburn freshmen class. Most of those guys have been on campus working out since June.

"I was wondering if I would ever get here," Slaughter tells Inside the Auburn Tigers. "It was really frustrating. My mother and my uncles were getting really mad about the situation. They were looking for a lawyer to get something done."

Before it got to that point, the NCAA Clearinghouse told the two-time Georgia All-State wide receiver he could report to the Auburn campus.

When he arrived the six-foot-three wide receiver weighed considerably less than he did during this past season at Hargrave Military Academy in Virginia.

"At home I wasn't really lifting weights," says Slaughter, who was named Georgia AAA Player of the Year his senior season in high school. "I did a lot of running and that is probably why I have dropped the weight. When I got on the scale here at Auburn it was 170 pounds. I said, ‘Oh, man, that's not good,' but then I figure that it really doesn't matter because they are going to put weight on me anyway."

Chris Slaughter is shown at Thursday's practice.

Slaughter says he will be ready to join his teammates in full pad practices as soon as he is cleared to do that. "I think I might have to wait until next week on that," he says.

In the meantime, he has spent hours studying his play book and running routes by himself on the AU practice field. "I feel like I have learned a lot of the plays already," he says.

The Tigers practiced in 100 degree heat on Wednesday, but the wide receiver says that won't bother him. "I am in really good shape--very good shape," he says. "I love to run. Now I am just putting on my pads and stuff and I have to get used to my shoulder pads. I don't think that will take long."

Slaughter, who has been clocked at under 4.5 seconds in the 40-yard dash, caught 43 passes for 930 yards and eight touchdowns last fall at Hargrave Military Academy. As a senior at Peach County High School in Georgia, he set a state record with 23 touchdown receptions as a senior playing for a team that won the state title.

"He's a competitor," Hargrave coach Robert Prunty says. "He was our go-to guy, our go-to receiver."

Prunty says with Slaughter's natural ability, he can't wait to see what happens with the wide receiver at Auburn. The wide receiver seconds that motion. "I thank the Lord that I am finally here," says.

2007 Auburn Football Guide

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