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Selfless Jon Misch Still Showing Off: The Heart of a Champion!


Jon Misch Still Showing Off: The Heart of a Champion!

Jon Misch exploded on the scene last year as an undersized LB on a group that was barren. He played well, and with his attack/speed style he even earned the nickname: The Missile. He played with the biggest heart on the team and made a true impact.

Asked time and time again about being undersized, I asked him once how frustrated he was with the question. His answer was a glimpse into the humility of the young man, “I am just glad they are talking to me.” He started against UAB and Notre Dame and played in 12 games.

On and off the field Misch played with reckless abandon and earned the respect of his teammates with his gutsy play. Earlier this year LB Coach Mike Tressel referred to Misch as “All heart” when talking about him to me.

Misch now has broken the same foot as last time. He is out for five to six weeks. Does it have him down? Is he depressed? Not on your life. Misch told me, “I am so excited to see how last season we had so few LB's and now we are loaded. We are so much farther along.” When other youngsters would be depressed and feeling sorry for themselves, Misch is still just as excited to be a Spartan.

What does he think of Greg Jones who every time he takes the field as an outside backer it conceivably takes reps from him? “He is such a great player. We watch him in practice and he is just such a great player.”

In case you're wondering Mr. Misch, you are also a very good football player. When most young people would be bemoaning their circumstance, Misch is glad that the team has depth and that the Spartans will be moving forward.

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A foot injury is brutal, especially when a young man is so reliant on his speed. Let along essentially the same foot and the same spot. That is why the Spartans are not taking any chances. They will give him the chance to completely heal and there will not be any rushing him back. In fact, there is quiet speculation that if he doesn't recover fast that they may look to a medical red shirt. A situation that would allow him another season to add bulk and only get better. He red shirted as a true freshman, but a medical red shirt would still give him three years of playing eligibility. Without the medical he would still have two years left.

The Spartans are trying to build a championship program. Those type of programs are built with selfless players that care about the program. Misch is one of those. Dantonio talks about building that championship mentality. Jon Misch has it. Jon Misch has a heart of a champion. A heart of a young man that years from now when people look back on the foundation MD laid down in his first few years, they will look to Misch. Only time will tell how far he will build on his 22 career tackles and ½ sack. Time will also tell us of a selfless young man with a heart of a champion. A young man that plays for the Spartans and not himself.

Get well Jon and take your time. Standing on the field with his foot in a cast last week he was yelling out encouragement to his teammates. He wasn't pouting. He was smiling and shouting out “good job” to his fellow LB's. If you believe the Bible (and I do) I couldn't help but look and see him there and think of Proverbs 17: 22 , “A joyful heart does good like a medicine.”

Jon's smile and attitude means that he will be back. He has kept his zeal and his smile through adversity. A trait that Dantonio loves and strives to achieve with his Spartans. In the meantime he may have a broken foot, but he still is a role model with the heart of a champion, and he is taking some strong medicine!


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