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Maugle of Excellence
Hollidaysburg grad finishes Penn career.
In his final game for the University of Pennsylvania football team, Hollidaysburg graduate Tyson Maugle had one of the best performances of his career. The defensive back registered nine tackles, three for loss including a sack and forced a fumble.
But perhaps his greatest achievement came prior to the game, when he convinced doctors and Pennsylvania coach Al Bagnoli he was able to play despite undergoing his second surgery of the season just a week before.
‘’It felt good,'’ Maugle said. ‘’It was a good way to finish my career. I felt like it reassured that I made the right decision [to play].
‘’I had to beg and plead with doctors to let me on the field, and I was seeing doctors all over to fix me up with the right stuff.'’
It’s not surprising Maugle knew he was good to go - the graduating senior’s next step is applying to medical school.
Maugle had his fair share of experience with medical issues during the 2008 season, but not the type he’ll be looking for in med school.
The 5-foot-11 defender suffered a broken nose in Week 5 that required surgery and caused him to miss a pair of games and tore a tendon in his left index finger in Penn’s next-to-last game against Harvard, but Maugle refused to let the second injury end his career.
‘’Coming back and having the game he did was just really a remarkable tribute to the kid,'’ Bagnoli said. ‘’You want a model for the other kids to look at, just look at Tyson in his senior year.
‘’To fight the adversity he had and have the game he had against Cornell coming off a week where he couldn’t practice was something else. He’s the poster child of what you want your team to be. He was a terrific captain, he was someone our kids really gravitated to.'’
Maugle finished his career with five career interceptions and sacks, 148 tackles and four forced fumbles. He also was named to the All-Ivy League honorable mention squad twice and was named Ivy League Defensive Player of the Week twice in 2008.
However, to Maugle, the most important achievement was his contribution as a co-captain of the team.
‘’It was important to me from the start when I was chosen as a captain to lead by example,'’ Maugle said. ‘’I didn’t hoot and holler, but fighting back from my injuries was an opportunity to show my leadership, and in college football you put so much time in year round, and you only get 10 games to show how hard you have worked, so to miss any of those opportunities is tough, and I wanted to set an example.'’
Maugle’s hard work was evident through the versatility he provided as well. Not only did Maugle help Pennsylvania become the top pass and total defense in the Ivy League, he was also the Quakers’ top gunner on special teams.
‘’He’s a kid that’s really valuable on defense, and he’s so good on special teams,'’ Bagnoli said. ‘’He’s been good as the gunner on punt team. He fought us when we were concerned about him being on the field too much, because he wanted to be out there, and he turned out to be one of the best kids we’ve ever had at doing that.
‘’He came from no where and has been a stabilizing force, he has great toughness and great focus. He’s a model kid that you want you program to be like.'’
Maugle repaid his coach’s faith in him by helping Bagnoli achieve his 200th career win during Maugle’s final game, a 23-6 victory over Cornell that ended Penn’s season at 6-4.
Though his career has come to a close, Maugle said his college football experience is something he’ll carry with him throughout his entire life.
‘’College football was about the people who surrounded me and my teammates,'’ Maugle said. ‘’Going to work every day and experiencing that was great. The one thing I took out of it was being part of something bigger than myself. It was about the Penn tradition and just competing in a historic league like Ivy League was a great experience.'’
Maugle of excellence
By Michael Boytim, The Altoona Mirror (PA)