Football: Senior lineman receives national appreciation

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    Senior defensive tackle Jared Kesler has been named to the national All-Mayday Team by ESPN’s Mark May.The All-Mayday Team honors players who show toughness during the season. Kesler, who tore his ACL in an Oct. 8 win at Wyoming, said it feels good to be recognized.

    “It makes me feel good to know that other people have noticed, and also nationally they have recognized it,” Kesler said. “If it’s able to make it up to ESPN, I am pretty proud of that.”

    Head coach Gary Patterson said Kesler is one of the team’s leaders.

    “It goes to show you that mind is over matter,” Patterson said. “He kind of epitomizes the whole football team in respect to toughness and fighting through things. He has been one of our leaders.”

    Defensive coordinator and defensive line coach Dick Bumpas said Kesler brought speed to the Horned Frog defense.

    “We moved him to nose guard after last spring,” Bumpas said. “I think he gave us some speed there that we had not had in the past.”

    Kesler transferred from Dartmouth following the 2001-2002 season. He said Dartmouth does not offer an undergraduate business degree, and TCU allowed to him him to take more business classes.

    Typically the rehabilitation for an ACL injury takes four to six months, but Kesler returned after missing just three games. The rehabilitaion decreased the swelling in his knee so he could be fitted for a brace.

    “I love the program here and anything I can do I want to do,” Kesler said. “It’s my senior season and I’m pretty sure I’m not going to the NFL. This is my last chance to play football for the rest of my life, so if I was able to play, I wanted to play.”

    Kesler said his plans beyond football include an internship at First Rate Investment Systems, a firm that measures the performance of its clients’ investments.

    Kesler said he learned from his last season’s experience.

    “It gave me confidence to know that I can fight through things,” Kesler said. “It taught me a little bit about loyalty to your friends and sacrificing for the greater good of the team.