After forging one of the most prolific careers in the history of Mauston football, Tyler Jirousek will soon be headed to central Minnesota to continue his football career.

This past winter, Jirousek made the decision to commit to St. Cloud State to play football. Jirousek is currently a senior at Mauston High School and set to graduate this spring. Following a stellar career as a running back for the Golden Eagles, it should come as little surprise that he’ll continue to play at the next level.

During his Mauston career, Jirousek rushed for 3,375 yards and 44 touchdowns on 580 carries for an average of 5.8 yards per rush. He was a first-team all-conference selection in his final two years and was named the 2018 South Central Conference Player of the Year.

Jirousek’s steady contributions out of the backfield were a key component of Mauston’s recent run of success. The Golden Eagles have made the playoffs in each of the last four seasons and won a conference title this past year for the first time since 2000.

Mauston head coach Roland Lehman had high praise for Jirousek as an all-around running back and believes he has the attributes necessary to make a successful leap to college football.

“He’s really strong, does a lot in the weight room,” Lehman said. “He’s got great speed and runs with a lot of power as well. He’s got great vision. All those things make him a really good running back and I think he’ll have success at the next level.”

For Jirousek, the decision to commit to St. Cloud State, a public university of over 14,000 students in central Minnesota, came down to several factors such as overall fit and distance from home. He also received a scholarship offer from Michigan Tech in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula and considered several Division III Wisconsin programs before eventually accepting St. Cloud State’s scholarship offer.

“I visited a couple of schools, but St. Cloud — I really liked the facilities there and everything was really nice,” Jirousek said. “I got to spend some time with the players and I got along with them all very well. As far as the distance from home, it wasn’t too bad.”

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The St. Cloud State Huskies are an NCAA Division II team that competes in the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference (NSIC), which consists of nine Minnesota schools, three in South Dakota, two in North Dakota and one in both Iowa and Nebraska.

The Huskies are coached by Scott Underwood, who has guided them to an 82-45 record with three playoff appearances and an NSIC North title in his 11 years at the helm. Underwood also praised Jirousek as an all-around running back and noted that he could see playing time as early as a freshman.

“We are excited for Tyler to be joining us next fall,” Underwood said. “We feel he brings the total package as a running back. He has excellent vision and feel for the holes and combines it with the speed and explosiveness that makes him hard to tackle. He is at a position in our offense that we usually like to redshirt but think Tyler may push for playing time.”

As for his high school coaching staff, Jirousek lauded Lehman and his contributions to him during both his career and the recruiting process.

“Lehman has definitely been a big part of the recruiting process for me. He’s helped me out a lot,” Jirousek said. “On a personal level, Lehman is really awesome. He’s always there for you, he’s always there to give you advice no matter what and he’s a very good coach who I respect a lot.”

Though a new chapter in Jirousek’s football career and life will soon begin, he also reflected on the memories he made in Mauston and what he’ll miss about playing for the Golden Eagles.

“I’m going to miss playing with my friends a lot. We’ve grown up together since fourth grade playing together,” Jirousek said. “All the parents and everyone are really close, so I’m going to miss playing in front of all the parents and everyone in Mauston.”

Follow Zach Rastall on Twitter @zrastall17 or contact him at 608-697-7943.

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