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Jeff Kolpack, Published January 28 2011

Where are they now?: Former ND Mr. Basketball Koenig now works in Ariz.

When it came to sports injuries, Tyler Koenig, unfortunately, had an advantage over other candidates applying for a position with Stryker Orthopaedics. He went through seven knee surgeries.

Stryker specializes in products for knee and hip replacements and Koenig got the job in medical sales in the Phoenix area. The Fargo North graduate looks back at his high school and college career with mixed feelings.

The 2003 North Dakota Mr. Basketball had more college options for football, but took the basketball route signing at Wisconsin-Green Bay. He later transferred to the University of North Dakota.

He had ACL problems, microfracture surgery and a procedure called mosaicplasty.

“I was completely free from injuries my first year of college,” Koenig said. “Then it all went downhill once I got the first major one. I could never bounce back from that. My entire last three years of college, my knee was never the same.”

He was also a Division I football prospect as a tight end. At 6-foot-7 with decent speed and good hands, recruiters loved his potential.

“My buddies give me grief all the time, what could it have been if you played football,” Koenig said. “It does bother me, but it’s easy to say now.”

What doesn’t bother him, certainly, is his career. He works with former North Dakota State football players Tony Monte, Josh Moch, Jerimiah Wurzbacher and Nick Compton.

“I like what I’m doing. It keeps me around athletics a little bit,” Koenig said. “I can’t complain.”