KENT - Luke Wollet's size might fool most offensive players.
The Kent State junior football player stands 6 feet, 198 pounds, but the safety from Poland Seminary High School can leave the opposition dazed and confused in his aftermath.
"It feels pretty good since last year I played about 10 pounds lighter," said Wollet, whose team is playing for the Mid-American Conference East Division title Saturday at Bowling Green. "It always feels good. You're not always going to get great shots. But when you do, it feels pretty good."
Wollet is second on the Golden Flashes with 78 tackles, behind 5-11, 230-pound linebacker Luke Batton with 98.
KSU coach Darrell Hazell said Wollet is kind of a throwback player.
"He's got a great on-the-field feel about the game," Hazell said. "He understands when things are coming at him, how to get close to those tipped balls, stepping in passing lanes. He's a very physical guy."
Wollet shares the team lead with three interceptions with 6-3, 255-pound defensive end Mark Fackler.
"I have great teammates," said Wollet, whose team is 9-1, 6-0 MAC East. "I'm lucky enough that other guys are doing their job really well. Sometimes I happen to be on the end of formula to finish the play off.
"Some balls have gone my way and I'm blessed for it."
Wollet is one of a handful of area players on the Kent State roster. In addition to Wollet is fellow Poland graduate and freshman Colin Reardon, a 6-1, 195-pound quarterback. The rest are Mahoning County players in Skevo Zembillas, a 5-8, 165-pound wide receiver from Campbell; Jordan Italiano, a 5-10, 200-pound safety from Canfield; and Sal Battles, a 5-10, 225-pound safety from Youngstown (East).
"That's a great football area," Hazell said. "It starts with the coaching. There's great coaches in the Youngstown/Mahoning (Valley) area. Year in and year out, if you look at rosters around the country, you'll find some of the best players coming out of that area."
One of them is Wollet, who has a powerful impact at the line of scrimmage.
"He loves to come downhill and strike people," Hazell said. "A lot of times, he's hitting people at the line of scrimmage. That means he's diagnosing and processing things pretty quickly because he's hitting them at the line of scrimmage."