Jason Berryman meets with the media

A remorseful Jason Berryman met with the media after earning his spot back on the ISU football team. Thursday afternoon it was announced that Berryman had met the academic and personal criteria set by ISU head coach Dan McCarney to earn his spot back on the roster.

The former Big 12 Defensive Player of the Year said before his time in jail he took things in his life for granted.


"I didn't really fully appreciate the things that I had," Berryman said. "Those 258 days in jail gave me a new perspective on life. Right now it's like I have a whole new life."


Berryman had opportunities to play elsewhere, but he said returning to Iowa State was part of him becoming a better person.


"The way you become a better person is by facing the things you did wrong and learning from the mistakes," Berryman said. "I don't think you can learn from your mistakes by running from the mistakes; so that's the reason why I came back."


It's been a day-by-day process for Berryman who is still trying to earn the respect of his coaches, teammates, family and friends.


"My teammates – some of them were most disappointed in myself than I was," Berryman said. "So I can really tell I have to earn their trust and that's going to take awhile but I can do it."


Berryman was convicted in November of serious misdemeanor assault and felony first-degree theft for stealing $4 from ISU student Jeffrey Kemble and punching him in the face before he stole a cell phone from another ISU student, Thomas Peters in August 2004.


Serving 258 days in jail gave Berryman plenty of time to think of what did.


"Every day I thought about the mistake I made that night," he said. "The things I put those people through and that's why I regret it and I'm very remorseful right now.


"There is no justification for that and I am really deeply sorry for what happened to the people."


The former ISU defensive end has added 30 pounds to his frame and said he's still as fast as he was before. He said the weight gain was expected.


"It's a natural progression, just like me becoming a better person," he said. "It's an ongoing process."



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