By Anthony Jones
TROY — Standing at six feet eight inches tall, Triad offensive lineman Lane Mahnesmith drew the attention of several collegiate programs.
The senior standout recently chose from his field of suitors and landed on Northern Illinois University.
He explained his decision to suit up for the Huskies, “They were the first Division I school to recruit me and every time I met one of the new coaches, it was amazing because they actively worked on building a better connection with me and my family, which stood out to me. I went up there mid-May for a Junior day and saw the facilities, which were great and learned more about how they care about football and also graduating with a degree.”
Northern Illinois is fresh off a 7-6 campaign, which they capped off with a 21-19 victory over Arkansas State in the Camellia Bowl. Five of their six losses came in one-possession games.
Their recent commit is no stranger to success, as he captained the Knights to a 7-4 record this past fall. Triad compiled a 27-11 record across his four years in the program.
“Having the opportunity to play football at the Division I level is amazing. I have always been the biggest kid on the field but didn’t always play like it. The amount of improvement I have made from footwork and my mentality during my high school career have shown that if you work hard at something, you can accomplish it,” the talented blocker spoke of reaching the highest level of collegiate sports.
The Huskies compete in the Mid-American Conference. Fellow members of the league include Ball State, Central Michigan and Toledo.
While Mahnesmith aims to continue his success on the gridiron, he plans to study business.
The recent signee also shared appreciation for those who assisted his journey, “First, I would like to thank all of my coaches, especially Coach Zobrist, Roche, Bassler, Potthast, and Qualls for pushing me in practice everyday and Anthony Clark for training me in the offseason. Obviously my family has played a major part by supporting me with whatever I do and always taking me to sporting events and workouts in the offseason.”
Lane Mahnesmith signs his NLI alongside family members. (Photo Courtesy of Triad High School)