|On Tyrone McKenzie||04.26.09 at 12:14 pm ET|
The Patriots took their first linebacker at No. 97, taking Tyrone McKenzie out of the University of South Florida. (More on McKenzie can be found here and here.) A 6-foot-2, 235-pound outside linebacker who was a first-team All-BIG EAST selection, he finished his senior season with 116 tackles, including 14.5 tackles for a loss. He spent a year each at Michigan State and Iowa State before transferring for his final two years to USF.
The 23-year-old certainly has had to endure a lot in his life — his father Ruppert, passed away when he was nine. “My father died when I was nine and having to become the man of the house helped me mature,” McKenzie said in an interview earlier this year. “It helped me become a man. It helped me on the field as well. It helped me get to the situation I am right now.”
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