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Packers’ Linsley remains a good guy

People cannot say enough good things about 2009 Boardman High School graduate Corey Linsley.

Sure, he’s the starting center for the Green Bay Packers. He’s a former standout with Ohio State University and the former Spartans standout has received numerous accolades for his football ability.

His team plays in today’s NFL Championship game against the San Francisco 49ers, but that’s not why people gravitate toward this professional football player.

Ask former Boardman and current United Local football coach D.J. Ogilvie. Better yet, query Ogilvie’s next-door neighbor, a third-grader named Carson.

Ogilvie, who talks to Linsley every week, knows Carson loves the Packers. Ogilvie asked Linsley to sign a Packers jersey for Carson. The little boy thought that was great, but he had no idea what was in store.

Ogilvie asked Linsley to contact him on a video call so Carson could thank the Green Bay offensive lineman for the signature. Keep in mind, Linsley is busy during the week preparing for today’s game, just like he does every week during the fall.

“He took 30 minutes out of his evening,” Ogilvie said of Linsley. “He’s got a baby at home. He spent 30 minutes talking to my next door neighbor, just encouraging and talking to him about life.

“The kid told his mother, repeatedly, it was the best day of his life. He took time out of busy night during the season to talk to this little kid, just because I asked him to. He’s very considerate of other people.”

He gives back to his community. Linsley’s generosity knows few bounds in the Boardman community.

Former Boardman athletic director Denise Gorski said he’s helped support the construction of the Spartans’ new football stadium and locker rooms, and the purchase of two sets of new uniforms for the team.

Linsley, a 2009 Division I state champion in the discus and runner-up in the shot put, understands the importance of track and field. He saw seated athlete Micah Beckwith, a two-time state qualifier, compete. The junior athlete is looking forward to the 2020 season. During the summer, a fundraiser was held to assist him getting a new racing apparatus.

Linsley couldn’t make the fundraiser for Micah, but had his mother take a sizable check to the event to help with the purchase of Beckwith’s racer, Gorski said.

“That’s Corey,” she said.

Gorski wanted to give back to Linsley, which Boardman did a couple of years ago. A local company had Packers T-shirts made with the Spartan standout present. He was honored during a basketball game in February. It was elementary school night. Linsley and another former Boardman football standout, John Ryan, were there.

“Corey was taken aback when he saw the student body section and the band-tops with his name on it,” Gorski said. “Helped with a contest with the little ones. He’s signing autographs for everybody and doing it with such great character about him. He’s got that personality that’s so warm to people, so genuine and sincere. That’s what I think is so great about Corey.”

Ogilvie said Linsley and he talk about a host of topics, sports, music, politics.

The coach and former player still communicate with one another every week through text messages and phone calls.

“When he was in college and I was in Florida, I got the Big Ten Channel,” Ogilvie said. “I saw every game, every snap of entire college career. I texted him of things I thought he could do well, or things he did do well. When he was a rookie and got ready for his first game against the (Seattle) Seahawks, I watched the game and didn’t give my two cents worth. He actually texted me the next day and said, ‘Coach, I’m still waiting for what you thought.'”

Ogilvie and Gorski are just two of many who have many good thoughts about Linsley.

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