LOS ANGELES — Blind long snapper Jake Olson delivered a perfect extra-point snap in his game debut on Saturday.
Olson, who plays for USC, took the field after a Trojans touchdown in the fourth quarter and delivered a flawless snap for the extra point that led to a 49-31 victory over Western Michigan.
Western Michigan knew Olson was coming in and did not rush the kick, according to ESPN.
This is anything but a regular PAT.
Jake Olson, blind since age 12, just snapped for the first time in a live game. https://t.co/amyHcFoVue
— Pac-12 Network (@Pac12Network) September 3, 2017
“I loved being out there,” Olson said after the game. “It was an awesome feeling, something that I’ll remember forever, getting to snap at USC as a football player.
“I think that, more than anything, touches me, just to see so many guys just absolutely embrace and love me on this team. That’s just something that, when I’m running out there, takes away the nerves.”
“Very special moment for us with a very special guy at the end of the game,” USC coach Clay Helton said.
Helton and Western Michigan’s coach had discussed the possibility of Olson coming in the game and made a deal.
“I commend and I thank coach Lester and the entire Western Michigan family for the honor of getting what I think is a very special person in Jake Olson in,” Helton said.
Thanks for all the love and support Trojan Nation! See below for a longer statement. Beat The Farm! pic.twitter.com/RXZKBz1r5U
— Jake Olson (@JakeOlson61) September 3, 2017
Olson was born with retinoblastoma, a rare form of retinal cancer. He lost his left eye when he was 10 months old and had to have his right eye removed at age 12.
Olson has been a lifelong USC fan. One of the last things he saw was the Trojans’ 2009 win at Notre Dame and spent his last day with eyesight at a USC practice, SB Nation reports.
He maintained a close relationship with USC and joined the team in 2015 thanks to a special scholarship.
Helton told ESPN there will likely be more opportunities for Olson to play in the future.