NORTH ANDOVER, MA – Shawn Loiseau (Shrewsbury, Mass.) became the first Warrior in school history to sign with an NFL franchise on Saturday afternoon following the NFL draft. Loiseau signed his undrafted free agent contract less than an hour after the completion of the draft.
"My whole life has been about opportunity and being overlooked," said Loiseau, the newest Houston Texan. "There is nothing more that I wanted than a chance to live my lifelong dream and now I have that with the Houston Texans. Now it is about taking this opportunity and making the most of it. Life isn't about where you come from it's about where you want to go and how hard you are willing to work to get there."
Loiseau received offers from nearly every NFL team by the conclusion of the draft and the Texans were his choice.
Loiseau became the first Merrimack College player to sign a NFL deal on Saturday. Offensive lineman Mackenzy Bernadeau from Bentley University remains the only Northeast-10 player ever drafted in the NFL being selected in the seventh round, pick number 250, by the Carolina Panthers.
Loiseau leaves Merrimack as one of the most decorated student-athletes in school history. He was a consensus All American last fall after piling up 121 tackles, breaking the 100 tackle plateau for the third straight season.
"We are so proud of Shawn and all that he has accomplished," said head coach John Perry. "We wish him all the best in his future with Houston. His future is bright and so is Merrimack's with the legacy he left behind."
Loiseau finished his career with 382 tackles, including 377 in his final three seasons, ranking him first all-time in school history. He broke the school record for tackles in a season with 133 in 2010 and was named 2nd team All-American. Loiseau was twice named Northeast-10 Conference Defensive Player of the Year, marking the first time a Merrimack player earned that award on two occasions.
Loiseau played in the East-West Shrine game following his senior season, marking the first ever Warrior to be invited and to participate in the game. He also took part in the NFL Scouting Combine, the lone Northeast-10 Conference player invited to participate.
Houston finished 2011 with a 10-6 overall record, earning a playoff spot. The Texans defeated the Cincinnati Bengals in the first round before falling to the Baltimore Ravens by the score of 20-13 in the conference semifinals.