BEYOND THE TROPHY
Name: Ben Kline
College: Penn State University
Height, weight, class, position: 6-2, 229 pounds, redshirt sophomore, linebacker
High School: Dallastown HS, Dallastown, Pennsylvania
About Ben Kline: After seeing action in all 12 games last season on special teams and defense as a redshirt freshman, Kline assumed a more consistent role on the defense this season before an injury cut his season short after only five games. Klline still had 18 tackles, 1.5 tackles for a loss and a sack in 2013. Recently Kline was elected as the new president of the Nittany Lions’ Uplifting Athletes Chapter. A two-sport start in high school at Dallastown, Kline started all four years and had more than 150 tackles as a senior. An Academic All-Big Ten selection, Kline had a perfect 4.0 GPA during the 2013 spring semester.
As a player, what is your favorite part of game day you get to experience at your home stadium?
Kline: My favorite part about playing at Beaver Stadium is listening to our fans go nuts when there is a third down while the other team is on offense. Playing on defense when there is all of that energy and noise is absolutely awesome.
What is your most memorable experience as a college football player?
Kline: Most of my favorite memories as a college football player have taken place off of the field. Simple things like sitting around and talking to my teammates on the couches in our locker room have produced most of my favorite memories.
What drove you to get involved with Uplifting Athletes, and what if anything has this experience done for you?
Kline: We have a great history of service and charity here at Penn State, and Uplifting Athletes is an integral part of that. I wanted to help carry on that tradition.
What is the toughest team you’ve faced or regularly play and what makes them so difficult?
Kline: Playing in the Big Ten, we face great competition weekly. Our conference presents us with a lot of different challenges, both as a team and as a defense. The different types of offenses we face week-in and week-out make every game a unique challenge, and that is the toughest part of our season.
What is your chosen major, and what if anything have you used from that major as a contribution to your Uplifting Athletes Chapter?
Kline: My major is Finance, and Uplifting Athletes has given me an excellent opportunity to apply what I have learned in the classroom. Since every Uplifting Athletes chapter is entirely run by us as players, we really are managing a mini-business. This allows us all to gain real-world experience while we are still in school.
In your words, what are some of the things you are looking for in life after football?
Kline: I look forward to exploring other opportunities. As college football players, our time and energy is almost always spoken for. Once football ends, it will be nice to have the chance to do things that I haven’t had the chance to do while playing.
Besides one of your teammates, name a college football player you enjoy watching?
Kline: Players, we don’t get the chance to watch much college football. Our Saturdays are usually spoken for. I enjoy watching whatever games I can catch, and see what other teams around the country are doing.
Who is your favorite NFL player and why?
Kline: I like to watch the players who I played with, and the guys who played at Penn State before me. It’s always great to see our guys do well at the next level.
What was or is the inspiration for the Rare Disease your Uplifting Athletes Chapter is raising money for to be part of the fight?
Kline: Our chapter is lucky enough to be the original uplifting athletes chapter. Our original leadership chose to raise money for Kidney Cancer to help Scott Shirley’s father, and others who were fighting the disease without a voice.
What is your favorite road stadium to play in and why?
Kline: We play in a lot of unique and historic stadiums during our Big Ten schedule. Every stadium we play in has qualities that make the trip and the game fun.