The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA

Harold Raker

November 16, 2012

Harold Raker's column, First and Ten: Learning from the pros

As alluded to in last week's column, another Valley gridder, this one a Shikellamy graduate, has ties to the National Football League.

For those who didn't figure it out, former Braves defensive back Keenan Chesnick, who played at Bloomsburg University until two knee injuries ended his career, is the nephew of former New York Jets and Cleveland Browns head coach Eric Mangini. The latter is now an analyst for ESPN.

Chesnick's mother is Pamela Steffen, brother of Mangini, and his father is Edward Chesnick, both of Northumberland.

His mother and her family are from Hartford, Conn. His mother is the oldest and Mangini the youngest of the siblings.

"My earliest memories come long before he was on TV. I remember him at family events such as Christmas. My biggest memories came from him and my other uncles taking me and my siblings to see movies at the theater," he said. "This was something they always did when they came to visit. I am a huge Star Wars fan and he took me to see Episode 1 when it first came out. I was 11," Chesnick said.

It was primarily his uncle's doing that he fell in love with football.

Although Chesnick can no longer play, he is still involved with the game, and the Huskies team.

"I am a volunteer student assistant, working on video and the defensive backs. Much like my uncle did when he started," Chesnick said.

Chesnick was about 7 when his uncle Eric started working with an NFL team "and even then I remember Sundays being a big deal.

"It was like the world stopped to watch. I really got to know more about him when he worked with the Patriots (he was Bill Belichick's defensive coordinator).

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Harold Raker
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