'Cats Look To Steal One From Tiger Country

Marques Cheeks got 13 games of experience in at the varsity level for O. Perry Walker High School in New Orleans last season. It was his first year of playing football since middle school in Georgia. Cheeks, 6-foot-3, 254-pounds made quite a debut at offensive tackle helping his Chargers to the Louisiana state semifinals. Cheeks talks KState and more here...

"My six offers are from Minnesota, Mississippi State, FIU (Florida International), Kansas State, North Texas, and ULM (Louisiana-Monroe)," said Cheeks. "I camped at Mississippi State. They want be to come back for 'Big Dog Day'. The three schools I'd like to make visits to later on are Minnesota, FIU, and Kansas State."

Although his team needed Cheeks on the offensive line in his junior year, he'll move over to the other side and play defensive end/defensive tackle as a senior. The schools interested in Cheeks are mainly looking at him for defense.

"I improved my kick off the line," Cheeks said of his game. "I did a good job as a run blocker. They wanted me to play offensive line, but I ain't really mad about it. It made me smarter in knowing what to expect from offensive linemen. I'm working on getting strong, faster. Next season I want to play at 265 (pounds) and bench 420."

Kansas State extended an offer to Cheeks via Walker head coach Emanuel Powell. Although he has yet to hear from the staff personally, he hopes to learn more about the program.

"It was around May 23rd when I got the offer," said Cheeks on Kansas State. "Michael Smith contacted my coach, and he let me know. Before I decide I'd like to make my official visits, and they're one I'm definitely looking into. If I had to say a leader right now it would be Mississippi State. They're showing me a lot of interest, and I've always wanted to play in the SEC."

Cheeks may not yet be finished with incoming offers. He still plans to camp at two powerhouses during the summer in Alabama and LSU.

"I'll probably hold off on making my commitment to see who else comes at me," Cheeks stated. "I want to study Engineering, so I'd like to go to a school with a good program with coaches who allow me time to study to earn my degree.

"One thing I look at in particular is team chemistry. I don't like to see a lot of separation among teammates. I want to play for a good coaching staff that will grind us hard into a strong, well-developed team."

Cheeks wears No. 75 for the Chargers. He reports a GPA in the 2.75 range. As a senior he's hoping to earn some love from the media.

"I want to be ranked in the Top 20 at my position by the end of the year," Cheeks said. "We had a great year last season making it to the semifinals, but we have some good guys returning. I think we can go all the way."

In 2010, Cheeks had the chance to play with his brother, Christian Landry, who graduated this spring from O. Perry Walker. The Charger staff may ask Cheeks to fill the role vacated by Anthony Johnson, one of the class of 2011's top defensive tackles now with LSU.

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