Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Just Made It | by Pat

Big congrats to the final four guys who were awarded scholarships: Senior offensive lineman Dan Chervanick, senior defensive lineman Casey Cullen, junior long snapper J.J. Jansen, and senior defensive lineman Travis Leitko (right). Per the release:

Chervanick, who returned as a fifth-year walk-on, was an entire staff decision as he has played on both the defensive and offensive sides of the ball during his career at Notre Dame. Cullen has earned the scholarship for the second consecutive year based on his performance on Notre Dame special teams. Leitko returns to the scholarship list after a year away from the program. Jansen, who took over the long-snapping duties on both punt and field goal at the USC game last year, was the lone junior honored with a scholarship.
Last year Cullen earned a walk-on scholarship and starred on special teams, with 8 tackles and two forced fumbles while playing in all 12 games. You might recall that Cullen's great-grandfather played for Rockne, and led the Irish in rushing for three consecutive seasons.

Chervanick played mostly scout team last year, but saw a little bit of action in four different games. As far as I can tell this is the first time he's earned a scholarship. Here's a nice story from the Observer on Chervanick.

Jansen took over the long-snapping duties on both punts and field goals from the Southern Cal game on last year, a position where he was flawless on 62 snaps.

And you guys all know Leitko's story. Here's a short feature from Irish Illustrated on Leitko, along with a pretty neat, introspective interview. Great to see him back on the squad, and great to see his efforts rewarded.