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Oklahoma football: Sooners transfer receiver Jalen Saunders sees first action

Jalen Saunders found out Wednesday his appeal to the NCAA for immediate eligibility was approved. Saturday, the junior receiver, who transferred from Fresno State, was in the Cotton Bowl playing in Oklahoma's 63-21 rout of Texas.
by Jason Kersey Published: October 13, 2012

/articleid/3718836/1/pictures/1856893">Photo - OU's Jalen Saunders (14) is brought down by UT's Kenny Vaccaro (4) during the Red River Rivalry college football game between the University of Oklahoma (OU) and the University of Texas (UT) at the Cotton Bowl in Dallas, Saturday, Oct. 13, 2012. Photo by Chris Landsberger, The Oklahoman
OU's Jalen Saunders (14) is brought down by UT's Kenny Vaccaro (4) during the Red River Rivalry college football game between the University of Oklahoma (OU) and the University of Texas (UT) at the Cotton Bowl in Dallas, Saturday, Oct. 13, 2012. Photo by Chris Landsberger, The Oklahoman

Because it had been four games, did you think it might not happen for you this season?

“We had a lot of appeals going on. ... I didn't expect it to be done this week. I was surprised. ... My former coach (Pat Hill) vouched for me. I think that may have played a role in it, too.”

After having so much success through fall camp, how disappointing was it to hear your waiver was denied?

“I felt down. They told me they were gonna set up an appeal, so I got my spirits up a little bit for that. I was just playing the waiting game.”

What was the nature of your appeal to the NCAA, and what did they see that allowed them to grant it?

“It's a personal thing with my father and me. I can't really talk too much on it because it's more of a personal thing. I'm just glad the NCAA reviewed it and felt where I was coming from with the appeal and everything.”

A lot of receivers have excelled out of the slot in this offense, most notably Ryan Broyles. Does that excite you?

“I watched a lot of film on Ryan in the summer and the whole fall. I've been preparing to play in every game every week.”

by Jason Kersey
OU Sports Reporter
Jason Kersey became The Oklahoman's OU football beat writer in May 2012 after a year covering high school sports and OSU recruiting. Before joining the newspaper in November 2006 as a part-time results clerk, he covered high school football for...
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