Is Faulk there?

There never was any doubt about Chris Faulk's ability to dominate on the football field. College coaches realized that very early and evidence of that were the offers he garnered during the spring evaluation period from the likes of Michigan, Nebraska, Arkansas, Ole Miss, and of course, LSU.

Faulk, who now stands at 6-foot-6, 320 pounds, passed the eye test when coaches saw him in person last May when he weighed in at 305 pounds. The general consensus that Slidell (La.) Northshore coaches heard was that he looked the part of a major college prospect. However, looking the part was only a portion of the equation because coaches had to be convinced of two other things.


College coaches wanted to see if his feet were as good as advertised, and just as, if not more, important was getting a look at his transcripts to see if he had made as much progress in the classroom as they were being told.

 

The influx of offers once coaches made their way to Northshore’s campus is all one needs to know to realize that those coaches got the answers they were hoping for.

 

Included in that group were LSU assistants Greg Studrawa and Joe Robinson, along with head coach Les Miles. Once they got the news they were looking for an offer was extended to the 4-star offensive tackle, and it took all of two days for Faulk to give Miles the word he was looking for.

 

“There never really was any doubt as to what I was going to do once LSU offered,” said Faulk. “I knew in my heart where I wanted to go and once the opportunity presented itself, I accepted.”

 

Faulk went on to have a banner senior season for Northshore and helped lead the Panthers to a 7-3 finish. His senior campaign ended with a 34-12 loss to St. Thomas More in the first round of the state playoffs. Although it did not go as Faulk had planned, he made plenty of memories in his final year of high school that will stick with him forever.

 

“You always hate to see it end, but this year is one that I’ll always remember,” said Faulk, who played in the U.S. Army All-American game and received Parade All-American honors.

 

Faulk’s achievements on the gridiron are certainly impressive as he was recognized for many more awards and honors. Acknowledgement on the football field always came his way, but recognition in the classroom was not nearly as common.

 

“Eighteen months ago, I thought it would have been a long bet for him to qualify,” said Northshore athletics director Tom Gainey.

 

A lot has happened in those 18 months though.

 

“If everything stayed status quo, in other words, if he made the same GPA he made last semester he will be good to go,” said Gainey. “He needs to do one of two things. He needs to add one more point on the ACT and he’s taking it again in April, or raise his GPA a quarter of a point from a 2.525 to a 2.550.”

 

Gainey, who is the former head football coach at Northshore and who lettered at LSU as a defensive back in 1974, credits not only Faulk, but several others with the transformation that he’s made in the classroom. It’s opened doors for Faulk that at one time were closed, and also has benefitted many other student athletes at Northshore.

 

“Mike Bourg (Northshore head coach) got one of our best teachers involved with Chris as a tutor,” explained Gainey. “Not only has it helped him, but it’s also opened the doors to ideas and brainstorming where we have eight teachers involved in our tutoring for athletes.

 

“Every athlete in all sports has gotten involved with our tutoring program. Chris’ need has grown to where it’s not just a service for him, but it’s served as a tool to help all of our athletes – boys and girls. It’s mandatory for kids who have a “D” or an “F” on their report card, but students who don’t have that can also get tutoring if they want it.”



Chris Faulk is taking care of his business in the classroom

Gainey added that the dedication from Faulk, who hasn’t participated in an athletic PE since December, has been an inspiration to other student athletes who may have experienced similar struggles with their academics.

 

“Everything is geared totally towards academics at this point, and Chris has been all for that approach,” Gainey said. “He knew what he had to do, and he was determined to get it done. It’s really helped a lot of kids to see that he’s so focused on his studies.”

 

Another focus for Faulk has been letting the hairline fracture in his forearm heal that he suffered in the U.S. Army game.

 

“He’s getting where he’s supposed to be, and he’s about to start throwing the shot (put) for the track team,” said Gainey. “He’s probably within a week or so of getting back in track and lifting again. He looks good even though he hasn’t been able to workout much.”

 

Getting back in the weight room will be critical for Faulk as he prepares to leave for LSU in a little less than six weeks. LSU is not very deep along the offensive line with only 11 scholarship players in that unit this spring, so the four big O-linemen that LSU signed for 2009 will be thrown into the mix early on.

 

“I don’t know what their plans are for him playing or redshirting his first year, but I know they plan on putting him into the fire to see what he’s ready for,” said Gainey.

 

That will have to wait as Faulk has some unfinished business to take care of before he can think of suiting up for the Tigers. And anyone who thinks that his focus is on anything other than his academics should think again.

 

“He knows what he needs to do, and he’s working on getting qualified,” Gainey said. “That’s where his focus is, and I think he’ll get there.”


Tiger Blitz Top Stories

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College coaches wanted to see if his feet were as good as advertised, and just as, if not more, important was getting a look at his transcripts to see if he had made as much progress in the classroom as they were being told.

\r\n

 

\r\n

The influx of offers once coaches made their way to Northshore’s campus is all one needs to know to realize that those coaches got the answers they were hoping for.

\r\n

 

\r\n

Included in that group were LSU assistants Greg Studrawa and Joe Robinson, along with head coach Les Miles. Once they got the news they were looking for an offer was extended to the 4-star offensive tackle, and it took all of two days for Faulk to give Miles the word he was looking for.

\r\n

 

\r\n

“There never really was any doubt as to what I was going to do once LSU offered,” said Faulk. “I knew in my heart where I wanted to go and once the opportunity presented itself, I accepted.”

\r\n

 

\r\n

Faulk went on to have a banner senior season for Northshore and helped lead the Panthers to a 7-3 finish. His senior campaign ended with a 34-12 loss to St. Thomas More in the first round of the state playoffs. Although it did not go as Faulk had planned, he made plenty of memories in his final year of high school that will stick with him forever.

\r\n

 

\r\n

“You always hate to see it end, but this year is one that I’ll always remember,” said Faulk, who played in the U.S. Army All-American game and received Parade All-American honors.

\r\n

 

\r\n

Faulk’s achievements on the gridiron are certainly impressive as he was recognized for many more awards and honors. Acknowledgement on the football field always came his way, but recognition in the classroom was not nearly as common.

\r\n

 

\r\n

“Eighteen months ago, I thought it would have been a long bet for him to qualify,” said Northshore athletics director Tom Gainey.

\r\n

 

\r\n

A lot has happened in those 18 months though.

\r\n

 

\r\n

“If everything stayed status quo, in other words, if he made the same GPA he made last semester he will be good to go,” said Gainey. “He needs to do one of two things. He needs to add one more point on the ACT and he’s taking it again in April, or raise his GPA a quarter of a point from a 2.525 to a 2.550.”

\r\n

 

\r\n

Gainey, who is the former head football coach at Northshore and who lettered at LSU as a defensive back in 1974, credits not only Faulk, but several others with the transformation that he’s made in the classroom. It’s opened doors for Faulk that at one time were closed, and also has benefitted many other student athletes at Northshore.

\r\n

 

\r\n

“Mike Bourg (Northshore head coach) got one of our best teachers involved with Chris as a tutor,” explained Gainey. “Not only has it helped him, but it’s also opened the doors to ideas and brainstorming where we have eight teachers involved in our tutoring for athletes.

\r\n

 

\r\n

“Every athlete in all sports has gotten involved with our tutoring program. Chris’ need has grown to where it’s not just a service for him, but it’s served as a tool to help all of our athletes – boys and girls. It’s mandatory for kids who have a “D” or an “F” on their report card, but students who don’t have that can also get tutoring if they want it.”


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Chris Faulk is taking care of his business in the classroom\r\n
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Gainey added that the dedication from Faulk, who hasn’t participated in an athletic PE since December, has been an inspiration to other student athletes who may have experienced similar struggles with their academics.

\r\n

 

\r\n

“Everything is geared totally towards academics at this point, and Chris has been all for that approach,” Gainey said. “He knew what he had to do, and he was determined to get it done. It’s really helped a lot of kids to see that he’s so focused on his studies.”

\r\n

 

\r\n

Another focus for Faulk has been letting the hairline fracture in his forearm heal that he suffered in the U.S. Army game.

\r\n

 

\r\n

“He’s getting where he’s supposed to be, and he’s about to start throwing the shot (put) for the track team,” said Gainey. “He’s probably within a week or so of getting back in track and lifting again. He looks good even though he hasn’t been able to workout much.”

\r\n

 

\r\n

Getting back in the weight room will be critical for Faulk as he prepares to leave for LSU in a little less than six weeks. LSU is not very deep along the offensive line with only 11 scholarship players in that unit this spring, so the four big O-linemen that LSU signed for 2009 will be thrown into the mix early on.

\r\n

 

\r\n

“I don’t know what their plans are for him playing or redshirting his first year, but I know they plan on putting him into the fire to see what he’s ready for,” said Gainey.

\r\n

 

\r\n

That will have to wait as Faulk has some unfinished business to take care of before he can think of suiting up for the Tigers. And anyone who thinks that his focus is on anything other than his academics should think again.

\r\n

 

\r\n

“He knows what he needs to do, and he’s working on getting qualified,” Gainey said. “That’s where his focus is, and I think he’ll get there.”

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