The Football Fever: Walk-on C.J. Saunders culminates rise through the ranks


DUBLIN -- C.J. Saunders was a three-sport high school athlete who loved basketball the most. So what is the 5-11, 176-pound walk on receiver doing scoring a touchdown for the vaunted OSU football program ?

His high school coach, Mark Crabtree, was talking with former OSU Defensive Coordinator Luke Fickell two years ago and mentioned that Saunders was a good intramural player at Ohio State he might consider.

Saunders called Fickell and the rest is history. Saunders started his OSU journey as a defensive back but later moved to the offensive side of the ball.

"I have to thank those who believed in me before I believed in myself," Saunders told reporters after his six-catch, 102-yard performance against UNLV including a 28-yard touchdown catch from Dwayne Haskins.

"I knew he was making a mark when I had a coach call me and said a defensive back just got yelled at because he couldn't guard C.J." said C.J.'s father Tim Saunders, the longtime baseball coach at Dublin Coffman where C.J. played three sports.

Saunders is averaging 38.7 yards per catch.

The 3-1 and 9th ranked Buckeyes are at Rutgers Saturday night.

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