Groom chooses Faulkner to further football career

Published 11:34 am Tuesday, February 14, 2023

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By Carey Reeder | Staff Writer

Maplesville High School offensive lineman Kristopher Groom signed his letter of intent to play college football at Faulkner University on Feb. 7. The 6-foot-7-inch Groom started only one season on the line for the Red Devils, but improved enough throughout the 2022 season to put himself on the radars of college coaches.

“His size is what gives him an advantage,” Maplesville football coach Brad Abbott said. “He got better as the year went on, and he finished strong. It was a learning experience for him, and the more comfortable he got the better he got at it.”

Groom attended a lot of camps to put himself out there to recruiters, and an MHS coach helped Faulkner and Groom come together.

“How I got in touch with (Faulkner) was through my coaches,” Groom said. “They got me in touch with a coach there, they showed them my film and it was really nice down there. It felt like home.”

Faulkner signed Chilton County High School offensive lineman Isaiah Davidson recently as well. Groom said he and Davidson stayed in contact with each other during their recruiting process, and the Montgomery school will have a lot of Chilton County flavor in the big guys up front next season.

Groom plans to play left tackle at Faulkner, and Abbott said his lateral movement got better throughout the 2022 season at Maplesville. The better Groom got, the more confident he got in himself.

“He is definitely a team guy, and one of those guys you are going to miss,” Abbott said. “He came to work every day, you never had to get on him about effort, and he always gave you whatever he had. He did what he had to do, and those are the type of kids you love to have in your program.”

Groom’s size and ability to move so freely at that size is a massive positive for a left tackle, and he may have not reached his ceiling yet.

“He probably has not reached his full potential, and that is a good thing,” Abbott said. “He can continue to improve and keep getting better.”

Groom attributed part of his improvement in the 2022 season to MHS bringing in a new strength and conditioning coach for the season.

“My vision and my ability to see the field and my strength more than anything helps me,” Groom said. “It was really built on hard work and tradition (at Maplesville). I am looking forward to the experience and getting an education down there.”

Groom will leave Maplesville winning the AHSAA Class 1A Region 4 title with a perfect 7-0 region record in 2022. The Red Devils finished 8-4 overall in 2022 and advanced to the second round of the state playoffs.