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Long snapper works his way up on the field

Long snapper Jake McQuaide is a key contributor to the Ohio State football team.   
In 2006, McQuaide walked on the team as a freshman. In his high school career at Elder, in Cincinnati, he played both tight end and long snapper.
“I could’ve gone to a Division II school and played tight end, but coming from Elder, which is so big on football, I wanted to play for a big school,” McQuaide said.
Despite the size and prestige of the OSU football program, McQuaide felt the team’s chemistry and receptiveness mirrored that of a high school team.      
McQuaide credits Drew Norman, the starting long snapper in 2006, and fellow long snapper Dimitrios Makridis, for his growth as both a long snapper and a crucial part of special teams.  
“Makridis and Norman helped me immensely,” McQuaide said. “I don’t know where I would be right now without them.” 
In 2007, McQuaide shared the snaps between Makridis and Jack Haas in the first six games, but remained on the bench the rest of the season.
It wasn’t until 2008 that McQuaide’s career took off. He was awarded a full athletic scholarship and named a 2008 Big Ten all-academic. McQuaide started every game in 2008 on both punt and field goal snaps.
The 2009 season has started off well for McQuaide. This year he considers himself a veteran with more confidence. 
Punter Jon Thoma and kicker Aaron Pettrey have also played a part in his success.  Early in McQuaide’s career, both Thoma and Pettrey shared special teams duties with him and they have grown to be close friends.
“Jon and Aaron are really good at what they do,” McQuaide said. “My job is to help them as well as I can.”  
Even as a veteran, McQuaide strives to improve by working on his consistency and placing the ball perfectly on his snaps.
In the future, McQuaide would like to be a long snapper in the NFL, but recognizes how few spots are granted for players of his position each year.  His other plans include becoming an aerospace engineer. 

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