By Charlie Magovern
Football positions aren’t assigned by off-the-field qualities, but for Sid Facaros, ’11, strong safety can be used to describe both where you will find him on a Saturday afternoon and a Tuesday night. Safeties have to be balanced players, able to cover the fastest receivers and tackle the biggest running backs, and although you won’t find any ball carriers galloping through the library, you will find Sid there offsetting his football commitment with his academic aspirations.
Sid admitted that football has put a strain on his academic performance as he waits to hear back from medical schools.
“My grades have definitely suffered. I have a .5 GPA difference in season and out of season,” he said. “But to be a student athlete if you want to do well, sometimes you have to sacrifice a little bit.”
Sid’s plan at Allegheny wasn’t just to be a member of the team. He, and many of his fellow seniors, came here to be competitive, which required more from the players than simply showing up for mandatory team functions.
“We came here because we wanted to be good and we wanted to win,” he said. “So if you want to be good on the field, it’s going to take watching film for hours on end, getting in the weight room and lifting, and then going to practice and meetings.”
That extra time paid dividends for the Gator football team once he took the field. In his four seasons, Facaros exemplified the dual-threat nature that characterizes great strong safeties. In the passing game, he gave quarterbacks headaches, racking up nine career interceptions, two of which he returned for touchdowns.
He also gave physical headaches to ball carriers, totaling 152 tackles, including 16 for a loss in his four years. He has recorded 6.5 career sacks and led the team this season with 63 tackles.
In 2009, he was a First Team All-Conference selection, and after being picked to play in the Division III Senior Football Classic, Facaros will likely receive the same All-Conference accolades this year.
The benefits of playing football go far beyond winning plaques and all-star games for Sid, though, as he said that the challenge of being a student athlete rewarded him with skills that he can utilize outside the context of football.
“Truly it’s the things you learn on the field that you can apply to the classroom as well about being prepared. If I don’t watch film or don’t lift and I’m not prepared for a game, then it turns out like crap,” he said. “It’s the same thing as a test or a project. You have to prepare for anything .”