Crowley High's Cradeur inks with Louisiana College

CROWLEY – Jude Cradeur had hopes of playing college football, but at 5-foot-9, the Crowley High offensive lineman pretty much came to terms with the fact that life on the gridiron was probably over.

Fortunately for Cradeur, Louisiana College had different ideas.

“I always wanted to play college football, but with my height, I didn’t think I was going to be able to (do that),” said Cradeur. “But then Louisiana College just popped up. I didn’t think I was going to go play football anywhere but they came to school and talked to me and that was it.”

Cradeur made it official Friday when he committed to the Wildcats, who went 7-3 last year under former Evangel coach Dennis Dunn.

Offensive line coach Mike Richard recruited Cradeur and it is likely that he will play center for the Wildcats.

“The only thing that was somewhat holding him (Cradeur) back, as far as being recruited by bigger schools, is his height,” said CHS coach Josh Fontenot. “But (with) his athletic ability, blocking ability and technique, he’s as good as a lot of linemen you’ll see.”

Cradeur moved around on the offensive line for the Gents and anchored a unit that produced a 2,000-yard rusher two years ago and a 1,300-yard back in 2011 (Davante Bourque).

“By far, Jude was our best offensive lineman the last two years,” said Fontenot. “He led it, anchored it. If Jude was having a good game and playing well, so was the rest of the offensive line.”

Although Cradeur is accustomed to doing the blocking, he might get the chance to run behind the offensive line some at LC. The Wildcats are looking at possibly giving him time at fullback as well.

“They are a spread team and they throw a lot, but when they are in short yardage and goal line situations, they use the two-back stuff and they like Jude’s athletic ability,” said Fontenot. “They want to see if he can go over there and catch and really move in space. If he can, then they might use him at fullback. If he can’t, they’re excited about having him at center.”

Saying Cradeur is excited about the opportunity (at fullback) is an understatement.

“I am very excited (to play fullback),” said Cradeur. “I always wanted to play that. I was always right on the edge of playing fullback, but it just never happened. There was no one that ever stepped up to play center so I always had to play center because I was the best at that position.”

Cradeur is the son of Phil and Millie Cradeur of Crowley . He plans to major in nursing at LC.

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