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'He's one of those guys you really root for'


Lake Orion graduate remembers support from hometown


March 02, 2011 - One former Lake Orion student reported back to his hometown, and it appears his aptitude for athletics hasn't faded.

Christopher Lum, who graduated from Lake Orion High School in 2007, has earned the starting quarterback position for Lehigh University's football team. Lum is currently attending the Pennsylvanian college on a full scholarship for his achievements in football.

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Chris Lum and his mother, Yolanda Rodriguez. (click for larger version)
Lum's high school record was little different in terms of quality, yet concerning quantity, Lum found himself playing not only football, but basketball and baseball as well.

"I was on varsity for all three sports, and I had a bunch of success with each one," said Lum. I was on the baseball team when we won state championship in my senior year and in football, we went 10-1 my junior year, and even though I missed 7 games in my senior year I was able to come back when we won the district championship."

Lum said he was able to play three sports not only because he "loved all three and didn't want to give any up," but also because of the encouragement he received from his friends, family, coaches, and the community of Lake Orion, to which he feels he owes a debt of gratitude.

"I've just done (sports) my whole life, and my parents and coaches all encouraged me to try playing all three," said Lum. "I give a lot of credit to the Lake Orion community because they show a lot of support for sports in their area.

I was really glad to see we made state champions last year, and it really showed that Lake Orion is continuing to support these programs, and I really just want to thank Lake Orion for all that support."

Dave Cecchini, Lehigh University's offensive coordinator and quarterback coach, said he's happy to have Lum on the team and that he's doing a great job on and off the field.

"This past season, when he made starting quarterback, he beat out a two year returning starter, and he's one of those guys you just really root for," said Cecchini. "He started in 10 games last year, and we won 9 of those, we won the Patriot League Championship, and even though we lost in the national playoffs (Lum) broke records like most yards passed, most passes attempted, and most completed passes."

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Chris Lum played football for Lake Orion High School for four years starting in 2003. He now plays for Lehigh University in Pennsylvania. (click for larger version)
Cecchini said the Patriot League, which is smaller than many others, consists of schools with very high academic standards including a number of Ivy League universities.

Lum's success has come as no surprise to Lake Orion High School Varsity Football Head Coach Chris Bell, who said that Lum was one of the best quarterbacks he's ever had. Bell said Lum managed to throw 2000 yards and 29 touchdown passes, during his junior year.

"The thing about (Lum), as a quarterback, is he had a year round passion for this sport," said Bell. "Here's a guy who's a three sport athlete, a great student, and a concert pianist on top of it, and we couldn't be more proud of him.

"One of our other quarterbacks, Sean Charette, is the same way, and he used to come up to the high school and practice with the older team, and he and (Lum) formed kind of a special bond."

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Bell also said Lum was the perfect example of why playing multiple sports can be beneficial. He mentioned that a number of coaches from colleges and other high schools tell their athletes to pick one sport and excel.

He believes this sentiment is wrong.

"The more sports you play, the more it helps build you up for the next sport, and (Lum) is a perfect example of that," said Bell. "(Lum) won several different awards from different papers, including all-county player, all-north player, and in some, all-state.

"He was the best when times were toughest, never got rattled, he never got nervous, whether it was the final play, or the last at-bat - people would say there was ice water in his veins and that's why people who say you have to specialize couldn't be more wrong."

Chris Lum is a senior at Lehigh University studying in the school of business.

He is currently searching for internships to enhance his experience.

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