By Alfonso Rivera
Former East Los Angeles Husky football standout Christopher Clark is making a big impact for the Syracuse Orangemen.
In his first game wearing orange and black, he caught a 20-yard touchdown pass for the NCAA Division I school.
Clark graduated from Dorsey High School in Los Angeles after beginning his playing career at Venice High School.
He has come a long way from his freshman season at East Los Angeles College.
“He knows how to control his speed, runs crisp routes and accelerate out of the break,” Head Coach Steve Mojarro said.
Clark ran track at Dorsey and was given a chance to play on the scout team out of necessity, according to Mojarro.
In his first year at ELAC, Clark seldom played, while playing behind two top receivers.
“I’m glad I got to play behind them. I was able to learn a lot from them and it made me a better player,” Clark said.
In Clark’s second season at ELAC he caught 33 passes for 631 yards with 11 touchdowns.
“I owe a lot of my success to Head Coach Steve Mojarro, our Offensive Coordinator Nick Garrett and our Athletic Director Al Cone for pushing me and guiding me in the right path,” Clark said.
“All three of those men have had a major impact on me being where I am at now,” Clark said.
After the season, Mojarro received an email from the coaching staff at Syracuse indicating that they were looking for depth at wide receiver.
“I sent them Clark’s tape with his highlights and the rest is history,” Mojarro said.
It was a successful season not only for Clark but for the ELAC football team as well.
The Huskies went 8-3, including 5-0 in American Division Mountain Conference play.
They also won The American Championship Bowl, defeating Santa Monica College 42-28, avenging an earlier defeat at the hands of the Corsairs during the regular season.
“Having a lot of great offensive players took the pressure off me and I was able to put up big numbers,” Clark said.
Having to adjust to a big-time college football program and a major university presented a new challenge to Clark.
“I got recruited rather late, missed camp and I pretty much had to show the coaching staff at Syracuse that I belonged,” Clark said.
“I am getting more acclimated to my surroundings on and off the field here and I am very glad to be contributing as well.”
Clark has 10 catches for 112 yards, including two touchdowns, one each, against Rutgers and Northwestern.
“I love it here, I feel that I should have been playing Division 1 since day one, but I am grateful that I went the junior college route. It made me grow and appreciate my talent and in addition, helped me build character,” said Clark.
“I also got recruited by Sacramento State but when I heard Division 1, and Syracuse, it was a no-brainer,” said Clark.
Clark hopes to follow in the footsteps of former Syracuse and NFL standouts, Art Monk, Marvin Harrison, Donovan McNabb and Dwight Freeney.