GCC wide receiver Kurpiel lands unique walk-on offer with St. Francis (Pa.)

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Sunday, February 24, 2019 | 12:54 PM


Greensburg Central Catholic senior Bryce Kurpiel is a unique case in the recruiting game.

He had no scholarship offers for football, yet could end up on a Divison I-FCS roster next season.

Here’s his story:

Kurpiel, who is from Ligonier, wanted to attend a college that offered a five-year physician’s assistant program.

St. Francis (Pa.) satisfied that requirement, so Kurpiel opted to apply there.

He got in.

Somehow, behind the scenes, Red Flash football coaches discovered the oft-injured Kurpiel had some potential as a wide receiver at GCC. They liked what they found so they decided to take a chance on him.

Much to Kurpiel’s surprise, they offered him a preferred walk-on opportunity.

He has to try out and can earn a scholarship down the road.

“They asked me to play football,” Kurpiel said. “After my injuries the past two years I didn’t think I would get any interest.”

He had a concussion as a sophomore, pulled his hamstring as a junior and broke his leg as a senior.

“Honestly, when I broke my leg I thought I was completely done,” he said. “But I just tried to push through and played with what I had.”

He missed 13 games, seven this past season.

But he worked hard to walk, jog, run again and, “Right now, I am perfectly healthy,” he said.

Kurpiel had an offer from Seton Hill for baseball, arguably his “main” sport, and had all but discarded football.

Suddenly, he has a rekindled drive to return to the gridiron.

“I’ve dedicated a lot of time to the game and really appreciate that opportunity to show off my skill,” he said. “My dad always says to never pass up opportunity. And this is a huge one for me.”

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