NEW ORLEANS -- Juggling the demands between the playing field and the classroom is challenging for any student-athlete, but for two-sport athletes like Tulane sophomore Richard Carthon, these demands are even more pronounced.
In the fall, he suits up as a safety for the Green Wave football program. In the spring, after a quick turnaround, he represents the baseball team as an outfielder. In both seasons, he must fulfill his academic requirements.
"You're just always in season," Carthon said. "It never stops."
When it comes time for the conversion from football to baseball season, Carthon says it is about getting back into batting cages and perfecting his fielding technique with the little time allotted. After the baseball season ends, Carthon, a Shreveport, La. native, says he will quickly shift focus to preparing for football summer workouts.
"The biggest thing is getting back into football shape and working on technique," Carthon said.
Despite a year-round commitment to two teams, academics do not fall to the back burner. In each of his first two seasons, he has been named to the Conference USA Commissioner's Honor Roll, which requires a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher. Carthon is majoring in legal studies, with a minor in management.
How does he handle all of these demands at once?
"Time management, definitely," Carthon said. "You've got to find a way to use your time in the most efficient way you can."
Heading into the back stretch of the baseball schedule and with finals approaching, Carthon noted he was stretched thin, but he would "definitely keep on grinding, trying to find that second wind."
In an era where two-sport collegiate athletes are increasingly rare, Carthon holds high praise for both coaching staffs for not interjecting out of season.
"Coach CJ [Curtis Johnson] has been great – when it is baseball season he just lets me do baseball, and the baseball staff just lets me focus on football [during football season]."
He had equally high praise for the university itself, stating that the school has been "phenomenal" in helping him balance academics with athletics.
"[They] have given me everything I need academically," Carthon stated.