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Mike of All Trades

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“Everyone wants to be catching touchdowns everyone wants to be in the limelight,” said Griz Senior Mike Ralston.

Mike Ralston had the same dream every kid playing football had, scoring touchdowns, celebrating, the crowd cheering for you.

(Mike Ralston / Griz Senior Offensive Tackle)
“You know I initially came here to play tight end, I wanted the ball and I was being selfish,” said Ralston.

The dreams of scoring touchdowns though were quickly halted. In 2015 in came Bob Stitt and his uptempo offense that doesn’t even use a tight end. Ever since then it’s been a merry go round for Ralston. Moving from defensive end to tackle, back to the offense and wide receiver and now this year to the offensive line, his fifth position in four years.

“I feel like it’s been a long time coming I really like this position I am kind of naturally built for it and wish I would’ve switched earlier but I am having a great time,” said Ralston.

Ralston now joins his roommate Cooper Sprunk on the offense line. Sprunk knows all about making the switch as he too was a tight end turned O lineman. It’s made meals at home easier as now they’re both on the same diet plan.

“Honestly the first thing he told me was he was so excited to be living with someone I can get fat with,” said Ralston.

(Cooper Sprunk / Griz Senior Center)
“When he was a receiver he would have a salad and like a piece of pizza and a healthy piece of meat and now he can have pasta a pizza maybe a bite of salad here and there so it’s pretty nice,” said Cooper Sprunk.

But I don’t think Ralston would fit into the ‘fat’ category. The 6’5 300 pounder is first on the depth chart at right tackle and certainly looks the part. Despite being new to the position he has some advantages after playing all over the place.

(Mike Germer / Griz Offensive Line Coach)
“Just being a guy who’s played a lot of positions I think he has a pretty good idea about the grand scheme of things. The technical stuff he is figuring out and I think h is coming around faster than most thought he would,” said Griz Offensive Line Coach Mike Germer.

“I mean it’s what his tenth position change so he is used to that and he learned really fast where to put his hands his footwork is one of the best and he’s big guy so it’s a great fit for him,” said Ralston.

It’s ironic that after dreaming of touchdowns Ralston ended up at the most uncelebrated position in football, something he says has taught him a lot both as a football player and as a person.

“It’s been a crazy journey, I think it’s been good for me in the long run because it has given me some adversity and kind of with o-line it has all come together and I guess I have finally found my place and I really like it,” said Ralston.

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