Collegiate Successes: Tanner Blain

After+he+graduates+from+San+Diego+State+this+spring%2C+Lakes+alumnus+Tanner+Blain+plans+on+preparing+for+the+National+Football+League.
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Collegiate Successes: Tanner Blain

After he graduates from San Diego State this spring, Lakes alumnus Tanner Blain plans on preparing for the National Football League.

After he graduates from San Diego State this spring, Lakes alumnus Tanner Blain plans on preparing for the National Football League.

Photo courtesy of Tanner Blain

After he graduates from San Diego State this spring, Lakes alumnus Tanner Blain plans on preparing for the National Football League.

Photo courtesy of Tanner Blain

Photo courtesy of Tanner Blain

After he graduates from San Diego State this spring, Lakes alumnus Tanner Blain plans on preparing for the National Football League.

Griffin Quinn, Social Media & Promotions Director

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If you listen close enough in the halls of Lakes Community High School, perhaps you can still hear the distant echoes of “TB3” being chanted by the superfans of the Royal Rush past. Whether it be on the football field or on the basketball court, Tanner Blain, a class of 2012 graduate, certainly made a name for himself here at Lakes and is continuing to do so at San Diego State University.

While at Lakes, Blain led the football team as a defensive back, kicker and punter, along with averaging nearly 10 points per game his senior season as a shooting guard on the basketball team. No matter what sport he was playing, Blain wore the number three which contributed to his three syllable nickname, “TB3.” Through every number three jersey he wore, Lakes athletics were contributing to Blain’s character and, in turn, helping prepare him for his bright future.

“I was given the opportunity to play and help lead a great group of young men. Lakes football taught me to be a leader in everything I do,” Blain said.

Upon his graduation in 2012, Blain enrolled at the University of Kentucky where he was a kicker on the football team. After redshirting his first season as a Wildcat and practicing on the team for a second, Blain transferred to El Camino College – a junior college in Torrance, California – where he became a punter on the football team in 2014. Spending just one season at El Camino, Blain then landed a spot on the San Diego State University roster, an NCAA Division One program that competes in the Mountain West Conference.

After just two seasons at SDSU, the Social Science major managed to stand out as a punter on the Aztec football team. Now wearing number 91, Blain contributed to his team’s back-to-back Mountain West Conference Championships, a feat Blain regards as his greatest accomplishment in his collegiate career. In doing so, Blain punted a total of 140 times and accumulated a net average of just over 40 yards per punt. One booming 75-yard-punt from Blain’s 2016 campaign managed to gain a significant amount of national attention. This bomb off of Blain’s right foot is considered by SB Nation as one of the top punts of the college football season and is surely one of the highlights of Blain’s career. Despite the numerous successes of his past collegiate career, Blain looks towards his future.

“I will be finishing up my degree and training in San Diego for my Pro Day in March,” Blain said in regards to next year.

According to NFLDraftScout.com, Blain is rated amongst the top eligible punters headed into the 2017 NFL Draft. Although it is uncommon for specialists to be drafted, Blain should be able to secure tryout spots for some teams in the league. If he is able to earn his way onto an NFL roster, he would become the first ever Lakes graduate to play professional football, an accomplishment that can certainly inspire former and current Lakes student-athletes.

“It feels great to know that I can inspire others,” Blain said. “It’s something that I’ve always wanted to do. I want to be the best I can possibly be on and off the field so that the kids see exactly what it takes to make it to the next level and excel at whatever it is they put their minds to.”

Although, this advancement to the next level is no sure thing, Blain has never been one to shy away from challenges. He now hopes his journey can provide testament to all of the great things that can come for the athletes that wear Lakes jerseys today.

“One thing I can truly say to all Lakes athletes is to never give up on your dreams,” Blain said. “It’ll open many doors and even inspire others along the way.”

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