Killiri signs LOI to Bucknell
Not many football players from Salisbury have the opportunity to play in college.
The first Falcon scholarship football player in at least a decade will take the field next fall.
Salisbury senior lineman Michael Killiri, a member of two district teams as a Falcon, recently singed a letter of intent to play football at Bucknell University. He’s not the first Falcon to play football at the Division I level, but the first to receive a scholarship to date.
“As I’ve said before, looking back at myself like two years ago playing high school football, I didn’t know necessarily how much of an opportunity I would have coming out of Salisbury to play college football, being that Salisbury is a really small school,” Killiri said. “But this just kind of proved to me, and I guess anyone else who is in that same dilemma, that it doesn’t really matter where you come from. It’s just about the work you put in on the field and in the classroom.
“I played all out in my senior year and hoped that the best would come. And it did.”
Killiri was initially interested in Bucknell for the school’s chemical engineering program after his interest for science and math grew at Salisbury. Then when he had his chance to also play football for the Bison, he couldn’t pass it up.
“Coming out of last year, I knew Bucknell was at the top of my list academically for what I want to do,” Killiri said. “I went up there for football camps. I went up there for unofficial visits. I really liked the campus and the atmosphere.
“Bucknell wasn’t in contact with me that much during that time. But once Bucknell got in contact, I kept following through with them. They offered me and it just worked out really well.”
His choice was between Bucknell, a number of other Patriot League schools (Lehigh and Lafayette) and a couple of polytechnic institutes (Rensslear in Connecticut and Worcester in Massachusets). But the combination of Bucknell’s academics and football opportunity was everything Killiri was looking for in his next four-year destination.
Killiri, who played both offensive tackle and defensive end at Salisbury under head coach Andy Cerco, will strictly focus on the offensive line at Bucknell.
“Most of the kids coming out of Salisbury have been playing both sides of the ball, just because of the number of kids we have on the team,” Killiri said. “But I think this will really help me focus on one side of the ball.”
Killiri didn’t start playing football in high school until his sophomore season. And ever since he suited up for Cerco, he’s been in the starting lineup.
He plans to major in chemical engineering at Bucknell.