Trace Clark is just keeping family tradition alive.
His dad, Steve, is a former defensive lineman for the New England Patriots and played his college ball at Kansas State. His brother, Zac, was the starting nose tackle for Oregon in last season's national championship game.
Even his two sisters, Sadie and Destiny, have backgrounds as Division I athletes. Sadie currently plays volleyball for Arkansas State, while Destiny finished her volleyball career at Arkansas in 2009.
But Trace didn't just inherit his family's athletic ability. He inherited the work ethic.
“If you want one of those ‘wow' moments,” Wichita Collegiate coach Bill Messamore said, “it was early on in his career, watching him make a block 30 yards downfield. That's just something you don't see. He was athletic enough to do it, and he wanted to.”
Trace started all four years on both the offensive and defensive lines for a Collegiate program that went 40-6 during his four years and won the 2009 Class 3A state title. He tallied 106 tackles, five sacks and two fumble recoveries his senior season.
Rivals rates Trace the No. 33 weakside defensive end in the nation and the No. 2 player overall in Kansas.
Trace chose OSU over Stanford, Iowa and Purdue. He maintains a 4.0 grade-point average and narrowed his college choices based on the opportunity to major in engineering.