Oakdale High School senior Matt Kjeldgaard recently made his post-high school destination known: he will be playing football at Fresno State this fall. For the six-foot, three inch 275-pound Kjeldgaard, Fresno State was the top choice out of several.
“It was a process. However, when Fresno State re-emerged it was the best fit for me,” Kjeldgaard said.
He signed with the team at his home in front of his friends, family and coaches and is eager to play next season for the Bulldogs.
“It was great signing in front of those closest to me. It meant a lot to have everyone there,” he said.
The process began in the summer when he was at a camp at UCLA in July where he was putting on a workout for San Jose State. Unknown to Kjeldgaard, a recruiter from Fresno State was in attendance as well.
“He must have seen something he liked, because he invited me to a camp the next day in Fresno,” the OHS senior explained.
Kjeldgaard made the trip to Fresno and had a six hour workout with Cal Poly the following day.
“It was a long three days,” he admitted. “I knew I wanted to put myself in the right position for my future.”
Following his busy summer; Kjeldgaard decided to sign with the Bulldogs.
“At the end of the day, I like the Bulldog mentality. They are a tough group of guys and I like where the program is heading,” he said. “I am excited to work with Coach (Jeff) Tedford.”
Kjeldgaard’s fiery red hair and contagious smile off the field have prompted him to often be referred to as a “gentle giant.” However once he put on his helmet and pads, he was a force to be reckoned with on the gridiron. Kjeldgaard played all four years of high school football and began playing youth football for the Oakdale Stampede.
“I will always treasure my time in Oakdale. The relationships I made here will always be close to my heart,” he said.
While on the field, Kjeldgaard helped power the Mustangs to a CIF State Bowl Championship in 2016.