News & Stories

June 9, 2020

Field of NFL Dreams

When Berry football debuted in fall 2013 and Coach Tony Kunczewski fielded his spirited if eventual 0-9 inaugural team, who could possibly have imagined that a 2020 Berry senior would be seriously considered in the NFL Draft? Perhaps only a very young Mason Kinsey.

It almost seems like a dream, but that’s what happened this year. And Vikings everywhere cheered when it was announced April 25 that Kinsey had agreed to a free-agent deal with the Tennessee Titans just minutes after the draft had concluded. He is the first football player in Berry history to earn such an opportunity.

How could it have happened? The Berry way, of course. Hard work.

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The wide receiver finished his Berry career with a Southern Athletic Association-record 3,343 receiving yards and 50 receiving touchdowns. He was among the best of the best on a team that has won four straight SAA championships and earned three consecutive bids to the NCAA Division III playoffs. He was a third-team D3football.com All-American and earned All-SAA first-team honors three years running.

Kinsey achieved all of these accolades by working harder than hard – during practice and in games, in his on-campus jobs as a Gate of Opportunity Scholar, and in his classes as a sports management major – and it paid off.

Invited as a junior to a showcase event at the University of West Georgia in the spring of 2019, Kinsey had the opportunity to impress representatives of both the Buffalo Bills and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. His performance put him on the NFL’s radar, and he intensified his efforts, driving two hours to Norcross, Ga., several times a week for extra training. In the season that followed, 24 NFL teams made it a point to come to Berry to see him play.

“Mason is just so competitive and has such a great work ethic. That’s probably his biggest difference.”


Spring forward to January 2020, and Kinsey wow’d NFL scouts as an invited participant in the East-West Shrine Bowl in St. Petersburg, Fla., the nation’s most prestigious college football all-star game. He was the only Division III player invited, competing with and against some of the top Division I players in the country. His star shone brightly. In fact, profootballnetwork.com stated: “Berry College wide receiver and NFL hopeful Mason Kinsey may have helped himself the most of any player in attendance … .”

Through it all, it is Kinsey’s faith that has helped him follow his dream. Tattooed on his arm is Proverbs 13:23: “All hard work brings a profit, but mere talk only leads to poverty.”

With his work ethic, expect to see great things from Kinsey in the years to come – within the NFL perhaps or in ways yet unknown.

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