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Inside The Bills

Mendenhall has persevered

Posted by Chris Brown on April 7, 2010 – 3:21 pm

To be the older brother of Rashard Mendenhall and to also be a running back has not been an easy undertaking for Walter Mendenhall, but you’re not going to hear the newest Bills RB complain.

Mendenhall not only had to be a backup behind his younger brother at Illinois, but he also had to play fullback and linebacker in his time with the Illini. Then when his brother left Illinois a year early for the NFL, Walter Mendenhall thought it would finally be his time to shine. Instead new head coach Ron Zook took his scholarship away from him, forcing him to transfer to Illinois State.

He went on to lead the Redbirds in rushing in 2008 averaging 6.3 yards per carry and 11 touchdowns despite making just four starts that season. He doesn’t have the same speed as his younger brother, but he can pack a punch. He’ll be an interesting guy to watch knowing how driven he is.

As he told the Pioneer Local last year…

“I had to wait my turn at ISU, learn a completely new system and try to get the trust of my new teammates and coaches,” he said. “I seized that opportunity and I never let it go. I could’ve given up a long time ago. I know my name recognition will help me with the pros and at least that will get me a look — not a first-round look, but a look. Every time I’ve had an opportunity I’ve succeeded, and just a shot is all I’m looking for.”

Looks like he’s got that now with the Bills.


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