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Wednesday, January 30, 2013
LB Searfoss commits as preferred walk-on

By Josh Moyer

Kyle Searfoss reclined on his bed Tuesday night after pushing aside his finished German homework. He decided to unwind by checking Facebook.

The linebacker out of Lewisberry (Pa.) Red Land had a new message, so he clicked on it. Assistant coach Larry Johnson happened to be the sender.

Hey Kyle, we'd just like to let you know we have offered you a run-on spot. Please let us know ASAP if you'd accept this.

Searfoss stared at the screen for a few moments. He couldn't believe it, so he waited for reality to set in. He called to his parents, let them know the good news and messaged Johnson back about five minutes later to let him know, yes, he'd most definitely accept.

"I was stunned, yet excited," Searfoss said. "I don't know how else to describe it. I wasn't jumping up and down, but I was excited. I've been a Penn State fan my whole life and, when I got that run-on offer, all I could do was be like, 'Wow, I can't believe it came up to this point.' "

Searfoss grew up on the blue and white. Both of his parents were Penn State fans, and they drove Searfoss to at least one game a year. His eyes would follow the coach in the rolled-up khakis, he'd hang out at the nearby tailgates and just soak up the entire atmosphere.

"I just loved everything about there," he said. "It's just going to the stadium, where your ears almost hurt after they'd get a turnover or a touchdown. It just felt good every time being up there."

The 6-foot-2 linebacker, who started part of his junior season and all of his senior year, said his aim is to play special teams early. And, by his third year, he wants to become a starter.

He believes his speed and instincts allow him to excel in the passing game, but he's hoping to contribute anyway possible.

With that desire to play early, he laughed when asked if he's daydreamed at all about running out of Beaver Stadium's south tunnel. "Yeah," he said, "even before that run-on offer, back when I was a kid." He's thought about that even more since last night.

But, instead of that being some far-away dream, he knows -- in about eight months -- it's going to be a reality.

"It's like a dream that's coming true," Searfoss said. "Really, I'm a huge Penn State fan. I know pretty much everything there is to know about Penn State.

"I was kind of born to go to Penn State."