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Chopticon grad still performing well at next level

By JAMES A. McCRAY III

Staff writer

Ex-Chopticon Braves quarterback Leo Kyte did not have to look at a depth chart his junior and senior years at Chopticon.

He knew he was the starter going into his senior season in 2008 after starting his junior year as well.

But upon arriving to Lebanon Valley College (Pa.) after graduating from Chopticon in 2009, not only did Kyte have to look at the depth chart, he found himself at the very bottom of it, five spots down.

His hard work to eventually work up that depth chart culminated not with just being named a starter for Lebanon Valley in this his senior year and not only with a captain’s designation, but culminated in what Kyte called his best individual game ever.

In a 40-37 overtime loss to Widener University (Pa.) this past Saturday, Kyte threw for 395 yards, fourth-best in program history, according to the school’s website.

“Those were definitely the highest numbers I have ever put up,” Kyte said. “I didn’t even realize it until the game was over and some reporter came over and told me what the numbers were. It was cool, I was recognized … but again, I would have rather had the win.”

The quarterback position was well occupied when Kyte arrived on campus.

However, Kyte went in and after some reps moved to third on the depth chart by the end of his freshman year, but was still behind two upperclassmen at quarterback.

The next hurdles came in the form of a four-year starter and then his last hurdle graduated last year after breaking numerous school passing records.

“Coming all of the way up from five to one took a lot of hard work and was well worth it,” Kyte said.

Despite being in a familiar role as a starting quarterback this year, Kyte admits that it still feels different than that of his senior year at Chopticon.

“It’s different because at Chopticon, I had a lot of preseason expectations because I was a starter in my junior year,” Kyte said. “This year has been more about proving myself and proving that I can play and am deserving of being a captain of the team.”

And although the senior quarterback is in Pennsylvania, he still finds the time to check in the happenings with his Braves football team, including its most recent loss to county rival Leonardtown.

“I know that we just lost to Leonardtown for the first time in however many years and that’s disappointing to hear,” he added. “But every time I come home, I talk to the guys. … I see [Chopticon head football coach Tony] Lisanti when I go home and I was up there this summer helping him with summer camp. I’m definitely aware.”

Kyte says he still has options including graduate school, the work force using his business administration degree or even football overseas in Europe.

“I don’t know if that is even realistic to think about or what,” he said about prolonging his football career. “I am pretty much going to let this year ride out and we’ll see what happens.”

In four games played this season, Kyte has averaged 213 passing yards per game and has completed 55 percent of his passes, throwing five touchdowns and four interceptions, according to the school website.

jmccray@somdnews.com