ESJ’s Kalen Henderson shining brightly in 2009

Published 12:00 am Saturday, November 7, 2009

East St. John quarterback Kalen Henderson already was ticketed to continue his playing career at Tulsa next year. But in this, his senior campaign, he has truly shown what he can do.

Henderson has accounted for exactly 2,000 total yards (1,482 passing) this season though nine games (prior to Friday night’s game with Hahnville) and 24 total touchdowns (16 passing).

“He’s grown by leaps and bounds,” said East St. John coach Larry Dauterive.

This is Henderson’s third year as starting quarterback, after opening the season as such in his sophomore season.

“It wasn’t fair to him,” said Dauterive. “To put a kid that young in there against the Bastrop’s and John Curtis’ of the world. He took his lumps and never complained.”

Of course, Bastrop and Curtis is one thing. The practice field is another.

“I’m probably the hardest guy in the world to play quarterback for. He definitely incurred the ‘Wrath of Doe,’” said Dauterive.

Through it all, he’s led East St. John to at worst a district runner-up finish (pending the result of last night’s game), and a top ten placement in the Class 5A rankings.

What do you enjoy most about playing football? Being able to play in front of hundreds of people every Friday night.

What do you like best about being a student-athlete? The best thing about being a student-athlete is being looked upon as the leaders of the school.

Do you feel an added responsibility of being a role model as a student-athlete? Yes, because I remember how I use to look up to the players on the football team before I got to high school.

Most memorable game? My most memorable game was this year versus Dutchtown.

Who has been the most influential person in your school sports career? My grandmother

Who is your favorite athlete? Kobe Bryant

Favorite team? Los Angeles Lakers

Favorite School subject? Algebra

Plans after high school/college major? I plan to attend the University of Tulsa and major in engineering.

Favorite movie/TV show/actor-actress? My favorite movie is “Superbad”, TV show is “The Game”, and actor is Denzel Washington.

Favorite type of music? Rap/Hip Hop

Favorite food? Pork Chops

Best vacation? Last year when I visited my aunt in Texas.

Best thing about living in St. John Parish? Being able to attend East St. John High.

Hobbies: Football, basketball, and reading

Parents: Brandon and Uneika Henderson