Associated Press
Pittsburgh Steelers defensive end Brett Keisel celebrates after sacking San Diego Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers.

Former Cougar Brett Keisel, who now plays for the Pittsburgh Steelers, is creating quite a buzz. Not just for his great play on the field, but for what he is growing on his face. Known as "The Diesel." He stands 6-foot-5 and weighs 285 pounds. But what stands out the most right now is his beard.

He started growing the beard in the middle of June. Now seven months later he was asked by a reporter if there was a purpose for growing the beard, he jokingly replied "Yeah, to look like this. No it was just something fun I decided to do. Playoff beards are big around here in Pittsburgh, and obviously we missed the playoffs the year before, so it was just something I tried to do to convince myself we were getting back to the playoffs."

He was also asked how he fits a chin strap around the beard?

"Just lock it down baby" said Keisel, as the room full of reporters laughed.

1 comment on this story

Keisel's beard has become so popular that it even has it own Facebook page. The page has over 15,000 followers. After Pittsburgh's huge playoff win over Baltimore Keisel exclaimed "The beard lives on".

With the Steelers now in the Super Bowl, his beard continues to grow. Is Keisel getting tired of the beard?

"I don't mind the beard," Keisel said. "But I'm sick of the mustache getting into my food. I can't put my mouthpiece in without biting on it. I'm sick of it, but I'm a team guy, and I'm going to ride this 'til the very end."

With a Steelers win, Keisel will have three Super Bowl rings.

Mike Whitelock is an author and sports writer.