Simpson grad experiences Division I athletic training during LSU internship

Simpson grad experiences Division I athletic training during LSU internship

by Tim LoneStaff Writer

Zac Craig, a 2007 graduate of Simpson, is currently working at an internship with the strength and conditioning program at Louisiana State University.

Craig said he found out about the internship by looking on the National Strength and Conditioning Association’s Web site, Craig said at first he had no intention of going down to LSU, but after a visit to the school, and some more thinking about the situation, Craig decided to take the position.

“I really had no intention of coming down here,” Craig said. “I came down just to visit, I thought about it some more and decided to go for it, and I thought, ‘If I don’t like it I’ll just come back home.'”

Craig’s internship responsibilities range from daily weight room maintenance to helping implement some of the programs the strength and conditioning program uses.

Since the internship started in mid-August, Craig has worked with nearly every sport. One of the more exciting highlights of his time at LSU came in January, when Craig traveled with the football team to the National Championship Game, played at the Louisiana Superdome.

One of the stories Craig shared about the game took place before they even loaded the buses to go to the Superdome.

“The strength and conditioning staff were the first ones down,” Craig said. “So we’re going down the escalator and there’s probably two or three thousand people chanting, ‘LSU! LSU!’ just going crazy as we were coming down.”

Craig talked about how his internship has put him in line for the next graduate assistantship, which he says will open up around the end of May. Craig added that his decision to stay at LSU came in part because of how much he likes the staff and the athletes he works with.

“I came down and said, ‘If I like it I’ll see what happens, and if I don’t I’ll head back home,'” Craig said. “But I really like the strength staff and the athletes down here.”

Before Craig began his internship at LSU, he worked as an intern with the strength and conditioning program at Simpson.

Justin Snyder, head strength and conditioning coach, says he demands a lot from his interns. He says when he’s looking for new interns he looks for people who have a desire to be the best they can be. Snyder says that Craig will be successful because of his desire to succeed.

“He [Craig] really thinks critically,” Snyder said. “He knows that no matter how good he is he can always improve.”

Nathan Seberg, assistant strength and conditioning coach, said that his contact with Craig was limited, but added that Craig always took pride in his work.

“I didn’t have a whole lot of contact with him,” Seberg said. “But he’s somebody that worked to his best ability and took pride in every step of every process.”

Craig says that the experience he gained while working as an intern with the strength and conditioning program here at Simpson helped him out quite a bit during his internship at LSU. Much of what he learned he credits to the way Snyder works with his interns.

“My experience helped me a tremendous amount,” Craig said. “Snyder does a great job of building up his interns. I wish I could’ve spent more time in there.”