Tenacious, tough, team-oriented: Tyler Tennant '10 is one of those rare football players that coaches are dying to have, teammates want to play next to, and opponents dread lining up against. Tennant just finished his senior season after a strong career here at Bowdoin and left everyone with a brilliant reminder of why he will be missed.
In his final game for the Polar Bears against rival Colby, the leading linebacker came through big time for the Bears. Along with making two interceptions at key times during the game, Tennant had six solo tackles and two assisted tackles to lead the way to a 32-27 Bowdoin victory.
"He was exceptional," said team captain Oliver Kell '10. "You expect him to make big plays and he had two interceptions at big moments in the game, which helped us win."
Captain Matt Leotti '10 added that those interceptions were important to revive the team's energy and that Tennant's success "helped us pick up the momentum."
Though he agreed that Tennant plays a great game, Head Coach Dave Caputi isn't surprised.
"I don't know what the best way to describe him is, steadily spectacular or spectacularly steady," he said. "He always has a very good football game. He plays hard all the time, he practices hard all the time. "
Caputi continued, "Last Saturday's game was just like every other one he's played; it just so happened that he had some great statistics."
Tennant has indeed been spectacular and steady over his four years. He finished his freshman year with 49 total tackles and one interception, totaled 28 tackles, two interceptions and two pass breakups his sophomore year, and racked up 55 total tackles, one sack, three interceptions and had two fumble recoveries in his junior year.
He ends this season leading the team with 40 solo tackles, 21 assisted tackles, three pass breakups, one fumble recovery and two interceptions, and was named to the All-NESCAC Second Team.
What's more impressive than those numbers, though, is how ardently everyone said they feel about the importance of his presence on the field and in the locker room.
Leotti described Tennant as "a great motivator" and someone who "puts himself in the position to make a good play."
Kell described him as being "tough as nails," with a winning attitude and believes those attributes make him a likeable player and a great teammate.
"People want to play with him because of his toughness and the way he plays the game," Kell said. "People respect him on the field because he is the ultimate team player who will do anything to win."
Tennant's attitude is evident in how he saw his role on the team as a motivator and a hard worker.
He described himself as "that scrappy leader on the field" and says he tries to lead by example, saying "when we need someone to pick it up I try to be that guy to make a big hit and get the team going."
His example is indubitably one that any player could learn from. Looking back on his time at Bowdoin, Tennant doesn't mention all of his staggering statistics and instead credits his success here to his teammates, saying "without a doubt I'll miss hanging out in the locker room the most...that's gonna stick with me."
Tennant's attitude and performance will certainly stick with Caputi as well; he said Tennant is "pound for pound one of the best, toughest and most productive football players I have coached—I can't recall him ever having a bad game."