Chris Horton: A Football Star at De La Salle High School (New Orleans)
When freshman Chris Horton enrolled at De La Salle High School (New Orleans) in 1999, few people knew that a future star had arrived. After moving to New Orleans from Los Angeles, CA, Chris’s older brother Robert was a starter on the De La Salle football team in ’99. But the real star was future NCAA national champion and Super Bowl champion Marquise Hill. The 6′ 6″ 300 pound Hill, who later played with the LSU Tigers and New England Patriots before meeting a tragic death at the age of 24, was literally and figuratively the “big man on campus.” But it would not take long for Chris Horton to make a name for himself at De La Salle.
When he started playing varsity sports during his sophomore year, Chris Horton quickly established himself as a superstar. In addition to receiving extensive playing time on the gridiron as a linebacker, Horton won several awards as a member of the De La Salle track team. According to the De La Salle yearbook, he won third in district in the 1600 meter relay and was fourth in district in the 400 meter sprint (Maroon Legend, 2001.) By his junior year, Chris Horton was considered the most feared hitter on the De La Salle squad. That year, he made the Clarion Herald‘s “Elite” team and was All-District (Maroon Legend, 2002.) As a senior, he was All-District, All-Metro, All-State and was De La Salle’s MVP (Maroon Legend, 2003.) But as great of an athlete as he was, Chris Horton was an even better person and student.
Achievements in the Classroom
One day, while walking the halls of De La Salle, this author asked Horton why he was such a great hitter. He just smiled, shrugged his shoulders and said, “I just play my game.” That meek, humble attitude always defined what kind of person Chris Horton truly was. In the classroom, Horton worked just as hard as he did on the practice field. In 2002, Chris Horton was inducted into the National Honor Society (Maroon Legend, 2002.) As a senior, Horton represented De La Salle at District Literary Rally in French III and was awarded the Provincial’s Lasallian Award, one of the highest honors a De La Salle High School student can receive (Maroon Legend, 2003.) For his efforts, academically and athletically, Chris Horton earned a scholarship to play for his hometown UCLA Bruins.
UCLA and the Washington Redskins
At UCLA, Chris Horton moved to the strong safety position, but was just as vicious of a tackler. According to redskins.com, Horton compiled 90 tackles as a senior. While at UCLA, Chris Horton was a first team Sporting News All-American, All-Pac 10 and was twice UCLA’s Defensive MVP. Not surprisingly, Horton earned his degree at UCLA while he was still playing football. With concerns about his speed and injuries, Chris Horton fell to the seventh round of the 2008 NFL Draft, where he was selected by the Washington Redskins.
Not content to just make the team, Chris Horton earned his first start in the NFL in 2008 against the New Orleans Saints. It was a memorable game for Horton, who intercepted two Drew Brees passes and recovered a fumble. According to redskins.com, Horton was the NFL Defensive Rookie of the Month in September, made the Sporting News All-Rookie team and led the Redskins in interceptions in 2008. Unfortunately, Chris Horton missed significant time due to an injury in 2009. Click here to see a video of Chris Horton’s best plays in the NFL.
Maroon Legend, De La Salle Yearbooks, 2001-2003
“Chris Horton,” redskins.com
More Football Articles From Associated Content
The Five Best NFL Players Who Are Not in the Hall of Fame But Should Be
Game Summary of Super Bowl 48 Played in Frigid New Jersey
The Top Five Running Backs in New Orleans Saints History