Super Bowl Champion, NFL Hall of Famer, Division I football standout are just a few of the many accomplishments of New Orleans native and former NFL great Marshall Faulk. But the 13-year veteran added another Wednesday that holds a special place in his heart.
The former George Washington Carver Ram star was honored by his school and the City of New Orleans by having his alma mater’s new football stadium named after him. The stadium will now be named Marshall Faulk Field of Dreams Stadium, replacing the old 9th Ward Field of Dreams Stadium title.
“I feel definitely honored and without a doubt moved to have something so gracious bestowed on me,” Faulk said. “A lot of people put a lot of work into this. This means a lot to a lot of people as it does to me.”
Faulk was joined by dozens of current and former Carver Rams including current football players, cheerleaders, band members and school administrators. Also in attendance were several New Orleans city officials, including Mayor Mitch Landrieu, City Council members Jared Brossett, James Gray and Nadine Ramsey, Senator J.P. Morrell and Representative Wesley T. Bishop.
“Today we are excited to announce that the highly anticipated 9th Ward Field of Dreams will be named for New Orleans’ own Marshall Faulk,” Landrieu said. “As a proud graduate of Carver High, his support for our city has been unwavering. While his legendary career on the football led him all the way to the Pro Football Hall of Fame, he never forgot where he came from.”
The state-of-the-art stadium will feature several appealing amenities including seating for 5,000 spectators, a Geo Green infield replicated grass field, a running track certified by the International Association of Athletics Federations, an instant replay video screen, a luxury VIP suite and a large parking lot boasting plenty of room for parking and tailgating.
“Marshall’s commitment to the G.W. Carver Family and the New Orleans community through the years has been remarkable,” said Alvin Jones, President of the Marshall Faulk Field of Dreams Board of Directors. “He selflessly gives his time and resources into making the Carver Community strong and resilient. We could not think of a more humble and outstanding human being than Marshall, so it was an easy decision for our board to rename the stadium after him. The construction of the Marshall Faulk Field of Dreams Stadium for our community is a fulfillment of the commitment made by the Orleans Parish School Board and the City of New Orleans."
The stadium, located in the 4500 block of Almonaster Boulevard, next to the site of the new G.W. Carver campus, will not only house the Carver football team, but it will also be available for several other local schools and LHSAA athletic events.
The construction of the stadium provides another chapter in the city's resurgence after Hurricane Katrina, Faulk said.
“This city is resilient and we’ve shown that,” Faulk said. “Through tragedy sometimes comes devastation, but for us it brought this city closer, and that’s what we are about. If you’ve been here or been around here, you understand the greatness of the people of New Orleans."
Construction is underway and Stage 1 of the process is expected to be done in August 2015, allowing teams to begin to use the field.
Travis Connelley | Nola.com | April 8, 2015