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Hard Work and Good Fortune
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Hard Work and Good Fortune

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Hard Work and Good Fortune are Paying Off for DGF’s Tyler Oberg.

by Mark M. Sahli
Photography by Friesen Photography

In the world of high school and youth sports, specialization by individual athletes appears to be trending. The type of specialization trending now is by an individual in one particular sport, versus participation in multiple sports. Whether it’s in the classroom, dining room, or practice room, or on the field, one individual within the Dilworth-Glyndon-Felton school system is bucking the one-sport specialization trend.

That individual is Tyler Oberg.

In fact, there might not be a sport Tyler has not played. And he has not just played them, he has played them very well.

Many collegiate coaches will tell you point blank that they are looking for well-rounded athletes. Plenty of football coaches, for instance, will take a multi-sport athlete over a football-only athlete 9 out of 10 times. Their versatility is an asset, and helps to mold them into better overall players.

Tyler Oberg fits that mold to a “T” or maybe an “M” as in, Mike Linebacker.
In the simple words of his mother Donna, “He is a keeper.” He has a never quit attitude; he is a great leader. Even though he might not be a loud cheerleader-type leader, when he leads, he leads by example. “He will not ask anything of any teammate that he knows he cannot do himself,” she said.
“When you see Tyler that is what you get with Tyler. A calm, cool, collected young man who will give 110 percent effort in any task he is asked to do,” she added.

Growing up on a farm with three brothers and sisters, it’s clear where Tyler’s hard work and dedication comes from. He is the third of four siblings. The youngest in the family, a brother, has been able to join Tyler on some of the fields, gyms and schools as a teammate.

Donna notes something unique about the Oberg household, given the world we live in, “We have no video games.” She adds, “They did have a Wii at one time, and it was only to be used with active games.” A refreshing concept to say the least, as she and others feel that getting out and doing things or finding things to do is a lost art among so many of today’s youth.

Given his many coaches in a multitude of sports, a summation of Tyler’s talents comes appropriately from D-G-F Athletic Director Joseph O’Keefe. About Tyler he says, “He is a leader in everything he does.”

Perhaps Oberg’s fellow team members share the same drive and they rub off on each other, as O’Keefe explains that Tyler is part of a very successful and “smart” class of senior athletes attending Dilworth-Glyndon-Felton.

O’Keefe is quick to point out that he was especially helpful in Tyler’s success in the wrestling room. He joked that he would go in to the room and “whoop up” on the young man. They both laughed knowing that O’Keefe’s statement might be a bit of a stretch. The conversation continued jokingly between AD and athlete and it was easy to see how coaches and teammates could not help but like Tyler, and his quick wit and no-nonsense attitude.
Sports administration might not be too far off the mark in Tyler’s future, as the AD’s office was where I was able to track him down. He helps out in the office during lunch time.

The 4.0 grade point average is something that gets thrown around fairly easy, and Tyler Oberg is no stranger to that number. He is a two-time all-state academic athlete in Minnesota. He is also a 2-year member of the National Honor Society. His favorite subject is Physics. In talking with Tyler, he appears not to have any issues with any of his classes.

To Tyler, it seems as if he started playing sports as soon as he could walk. Observing him, a person might think that was shortly after coming home from the hospital in a baby carrier. Of all the sports he plays and enjoys, his first and favorite sport is baseball.

The D-G-F team’s success last year in baseball would definitely explain that feeling. But Tyler expounded on playing with a cousin who was involved with the Minnesota Gopher organization and an uncle, who he explains, taught him so much about the game. They would always be playing the game or working on their skills during visits to each other’s homes as Tyler was growing up.
With Tyler returning as a senior, this year’s team could be on the same track for success.

Tyler also plays football, wrestles, plays pond hockey and summer volleyball at the lake, and although baseball wins out as his “most” favorite sport, he does not fail to mention that whatever sport is in season is also his favorite.

His hard work has paid off and Oberg has been fortunate to be a part of seven state tournament appearances. Those include three wrestling appearances, another three in football, and one baseball appearance.

Individually, Tyler has accumulated many accolades including all-state in football, a sixth place finish at 220 pounds in wrestling this year, the district linebacker award, football MVP and many more. Even with all the accolades he has earned, Tyler was very modest in discussing those awards.

Totaling up his athletic letters, twelve is the final tally. Those include five baseball letters, four in wrestling, and three in football. Tossing in the academic letters as a cherry on top, would put Tyler at sixteen letter awards.

That is not too shabby a high school career, just as he and O’Keefe have joked.

For Tyler, sports participation brings out the best in individuals and teaches them responsibility and accountability. Like most, he enjoys winning and competing, and feels that everyone should compete at some level.

He and his family cheer for the Minnesota Gophers, and like any good Minnesotan, sticks with the Minnesota Twins as a favorite professional team. “You have to stick with them through thick and thin” says Oberg.

His favorite professional athlete might surprise some. He pulled out a throwback name for someone who is only a senior in high school; that person is Minnesota’s own Kent Hrbek. When he explains why he feels that way about the former first baseman, you get to know Tyler a little bit better and you understand. “He won two baseball world series and has his own outdoor show” says Oberg about Hrbek.

The topic of hunting and fishing was just sitting there and was almost as if he could not wait to talk about it. He loves goose hunting and explains he loves to follow them in the spring and back again in the fall. Fall is his favorite time of the year and hunting is a big part of that.

Tyler’s plans for fall include playing football at UW-Oshkosh in Wisconsin. He is slated to play Mike Linebacker.

This does not put a cap on his plans by any means. After college, Tyler plans to enlist in the Navy. His plans are to be serving in the military ten years from now. If and when he does that and there should be no doubt he will, it would be good if the Navy is able to provide him enough sporting opportunities and challenges to keep him busy.

He is more than capable of handling specialization in more than one thing.