The Walk-On

The Walk-On! Being a walk-on to a big Football Bowl Subdivision program can be very difficult because you have to face a lot of adversity. It is already a big deal when you are not going to get the playing time in your position due to it being scholarship players or partial scholarship guys. There was one particular walk-on who did not go unnoticed last week in a big rivalry game. He goes by the name Chase McGrath and is a 6’1”, 185lb kicker from Santa Ana, CA. He was the number 2 kicker in his position, number 114 in the state of CA, and rated a 3-star athlete. McGrath and his father knew that Chase was going to be a University of Southern California Trojan since high school, being that his high school was the place where USC got most of their athletes for the football team.

Special Teams Coach John Baxter was in contact with Chase before the spring of 2017, but the only offer they had for him was to walk-on at the kicker spot. As soon as Chase knew he was going to be able to walk on, he took advantage of the opportunity with no second thought even in his mind. Though he held scholarship offers from other power 5 schools, he had a Trojan heart and chose to attend The University of Southern California. With Chase being a walk on he did not believe he would be a clutch factor for the team.

With :02 seconds remaining in the game and a score of 17–14, Coach Baxter called in the True-Freshman kicker out of Santa Ana, CA to attempt a 31-yard field goal to tie the game and send it into overtime. Later in the game, in the second over-time, McGrath was called upon again but this time it was to seal the deal with a 43-yard field goal. The players on the sideline all came together and waited for chase to attempt the field goal, but just before he was about to kick, a timeout was called to freeze the kicker. After the timeout, Chase came back onto the field just as calm as he was when he kicked the first one.

As Chase lined up the kick, it was nothing but silence in the stadium and both teams locked arms on their respective sidelines. The ball was up in the air for the longest time it seemed but as it went in between the uprights, the referees’ arms went up, and the USC football team stormed the field celebrating the walk-ons walk-off fashion kick

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