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Penn State Football: Nassib Shines In First Two Career Starts

by on September 13, 2015 3:15 PM

It's pretty incredible really.

Not that Carl Nassib is starting after walking on at Penn State. Not even that he's playing so exceptional well while doing it.

It's incredible that he has only started two games in his entire football career. Those two games, the opening pair of Penn State's 2015 season. In high school Nassib never started, his team a senior heavy roster that was loaded with talent. He played, but he never started. Not a single game.

Even when Nassib came to Penn State he wasn't sure what the future held for him. Ask him if ever imagined a three sack, two forced fumble, one interception outing like he had against Buffalo and Nassib just laughs.

"Maybe," he said smiling. "You never know, probably not [laughs] probably not."

"If you're not trying to get the starting spot, why are you here?" Nassib said about his early years at Penn State. "Everybody should just compete, just compete to get on the field. You can't take any play for granted."

For Nassib there is a bit of pride that comes from being a walk-on. He understands as well as anyone how far hard work can get you. And perhaps more importantly, how anyone on the team can make an impact. You're a nobody one day and a starter another. Now on scholarship, Nassib has graduated from that particular fraternity of players even if he still associates with them.

"I always like to represent walk-on university, you know? My fellow walk-ons on the team don't think I'm a part of it anymore, 'You're a graduate.' No, I still rep that every day," Nassib said.

Perhaps the biggest question. What changed since joining the team all those years ago. How did he go from a player who never started to a breakout star with 15 tackles, 4 sacks, 2 forced fumbles and one interception over the span of just two games?

“A lot of hard work, a lot of extra work," he said. "If you have a walk-on’s mentality of just grinding every day, just earning your keep every day, it’s just the way to do it.”

To his credit, it's hard to argue with the formula.

Ben Jones covers Penn State football and basketball for He's on Twitter as @Ben_Jones88.
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