Blind snapper Jake Olson still seeking NCAA clearance to play at USC
After finishing his football career at Orange Lutheran High School in Southern California, Olson was accepted to USC and had plans to join the team this fall, the Los Angeles Times first reported in April.
But Olson's plans have since been thwarted, as he is still not eligible to join USC's team due to NCAA rules.
Since he accepted a Swim With Mike scholarship to attend USC, which is given to athletes with physical challenges, Olson is being regarded as a scholarship athlete by the NCAA and counts toward one of the available 85 scholarship spots on USC's roster.
Per NCAA rules, FBS schools have annual caps of 25 initial counters, which are incoming freshmen and transfers, in conjunction with 85 total scholarships. Because USC has already reached its limit of initial counters for this season, Olson is currently unable to officially join the team.
USC is still awaiting a waiver from the NCAA in order for Olson to be cleared.
“We’re putting faith in the process that there’s a positive outcome for Jake,” Olson's father, Brian, told the Orange County Register in April. “We’ll take it as it comes.”
Olson, who lost his eyesight as a child from a rare form of cancer, grew up a super fan of USC football. As a 12-year-old, Olson formed a connection with former USC head coach Pete Carroll and his team, and dreamed of one day being a Trojan.
USC will open the 2015 season Sept. 5 against Arkansas State.
- Kayla Lombardo