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Duty calls for this blue-collar Beaver.

Byline: BOB RODMAN The Register-Guard

CORVALLIS - He is a powerful young man who can talk the talk and walk the walk.

A middle linebacker who seldom bends and almost never breaks, Richard Joseph Seigler has the speed to run down an opponent and the strength to finish the job.

He's Richard the Lion-Hearted ... or is he?

The same guy who has started every football game he has played for Oregon State - all 25 of them - and mugged and mauled opposing offenses with painful frequency is the same guy who cradles his baby sister as if she was a priceless piece of china.

"Richard is so gentle with her," said Seigler's father, Lloyd Seigler. "Then you see his rage on the field and you wonder ... is this the same guy?"

It is.

It is the same Richard Seigler, who has plundered opposing offenses for 185 tackles (120 solo), 28 tackles for 80 yards lost, broken up 13 passes and made four interceptions in his two-plus seasons of work for the Beavers, the 2-0 outfit that takes on UNLV (1-1) at Reser Stadium on Saturday in a 4 p.m. game scheduled to be nationally telecast by TBS.

It is the same Richard Seigler who donned jersey No. 51 last season and set an OSU single-game record with seven tackles for loss against Arizona State.

It is the same Richard Seigler who is totally committed to throwing every inch and every pound of his 6-foot-3, 230-pound frame into his football job.

It is the same Richard Seigler who often is the first in line to deliver a message to an opponent, a gesture more commonly known as trash-talking.

"That," said Nick Barnett, an OSU outside linebacker and close pal of Seigler's, "is Richard's way of getting the `glow,' "

The "glow" emulates from an aging Bruce Lee motion picture, "The Last Dragon." That Seigler was wearing a black T-shirt emblazoned with the Lee "glow" the other day was no accident.

"Had it since high school," said the soon-to-be 22-year-old junior from Las Vegas. "Got to have the `glow' this weekend."

He will. So, too, will his family. His father, his mother, Lisa, his five brothers (Bobby, Kevin, Shon, Lloyd and Lawrence) and his three sisters (Leah, Lona and Liza).

If football means the world to Richard Seigler, and it does, then his family means the universe.

"I came from a blue-collar family," he said. "There were no stocks, no bonds. We lived from paycheck to paycheck, and sometimes those paychecks didn't add up."

Seigler's father, an electrician, welder and whatever else he needs to be, often has worked two jobs. His mother?

"Raising nine kids was job enough," said Richard, the eldest of the Seigler brood.

"Sometimes it was rough. Sometimes we had to go without," he said. "But we handled each obstacle that came along. We handled it together, as a family. There is a lot of love in our family. We are very blessed to have a family so close."

Seigler tied his can to football as an 8-year-old. "He said then that one day he would play in the NFL," Seigler's father remembered. "He loves the game, the contact, the passion and the speed."

Born in and a lifelong resident of Las Vegas, Richard Seigler's flair for football went unnoticed by UNLV, a former member of the Western Athletic Conference that joined the Mountain West Conference in 1999 - the same year former USC and Los Angeles Rams coach John Robinson became the Rebels' coach.

Seigler was all-this and all-that at Chaparral High, was recruited by Colorado State, Arizona State and Utah State, as well as Oregon State. But not UNLV.

"My heart was breaking that they (UNLV) didn't want me," said Seigler, who led the Beavers and was fifth in the Pac-10 Conference in tackles last season with 93. "On Saturday, I've had this game circled on the calendar for a long, long time. I want them to see what they missed."

So does his father.

"It angered him that they (UNLV) overlooked him but Las Vegas is a tough city and not very compassionate," Lloyd Seigler said. "He found his heart at Oregon State."

Oregon State's coach, Dennis Erickson, is grateful Seigler did.

"Richard is one of my favorites," Erickson said. "He's a good student, he's involved in things outside of football (including the committee that assisted in the search for OSU's new athletic director, Bob De Carolis).

"He's an outgoing guy. He won't hold anything back, and he makes sense most of the time," Erickson said. "He's similar to some of the guys I coached at Miami ... aggressive, with personalties and loved to play the game."

And he truly does love to play the game.

"You can do just about anything between the whistles," said Seigler, a sociology major at OSU who admits he will compete at anything ... from football to fishing.

"But when the whistle blows, you've got to calm down."

Said Barnett, "He's intense, he's confident but he's not conceited."

The fire that burns so intensely inside Richard Seigler was lit by his parents.

"They made me believe I could do anything," said Seigler, who, after two games this season, leads Oregon State in defensive points, has 20 tackles (four for loss) and has picked off a pass.

"His mom and myself are hard-working people who set goals and go out to achieve them," Lloyd Seigler said. "We will not let anything stand in our way or hold us back. We give 110 percent, respect people and treat them the way we want to be treated."

Richard Seigler is a chip off that old block.

"He understands," Seigler's father said. "We are so proud of Richard."

CAPTION(S):

BRIAN DAVIES / The Register-Guard Oregon State middle linebacker Richard Seigler picks up yardage on an interception return against Eastern Kentucky. WAYNE EASTBURN / The Register-Guard Oregon State's Richard Seigler takes time to sign autographs for some eager Beaver fans.
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Article Details
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Title Annotation:Defense: Middle linebacker wants UNLV to see what it missed.; Sports
Publication:The Register-Guard (Eugene, OR)
Date:Sep 12, 2002
Words:990
Previous Article:Obituaries.
Next Article:Barranger on comeback trail.


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