Kevin Ozier: from living out of car to Pac-12 success

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By Andrew Michalscheck By Andrew Michalscheck

TEMPE, Ariz. -- Redshirt junior wide receiver Kevin Ozier is having a break out year for the Sun Devils.  However, Ozier’s road to Pac-12 dominance was not an easy one.

After Ozier graduated from Mira Mesa High School in San Diego he decided to follow his dream of playing Division One football. 

There was only one problem. Ozier was not offered a scholarship to play at Arizona State and couldn’t afford to live in the dorms. That did not stop Ozier from walking on. 

“It was tough,” Ozier stated. “I had some family living out there then they moved away. So I stayed with friends living in the dorms so I would stay with them or at my teammates house but sometimes they weren’t home, so I had to sleep in my car.”

And for three years there after Ozier would still fight for his right to earn a scholarship.  After redshirting his first year on campus and not seeing any action his redshirt freshman year, Ozier often contemplated walking away from the game. 

“Man I felt like I was busting my tail and I wasn’t getting recognized and I was getting discouraged,” Ozier declared. “But my friends, family and teammates kept telling me to keep working hard and it will pay off. So I just put my head high and kept working hard.”

In the spring of 2012, Ozier’s hard work finally paid off when new head coach Todd Graham awarded Ozier a scholarship.

“Kevin has done a great job. He really has," Graham said. “I think about his plate about how he had to walk-on and basically live out of his car.  What a great success story that is.”

Now Kevin is having success on the field as well. Coming off the Devil’s 27-17 victory over California, Ozier leads the team in receiving touchdowns with three. 

Knowing the struggles Ozier went through only makes his accomplishments that much sweeter.

“Coming from a walk-on and being overlooked to becoming one of the key players is just a great feeling," Ozier stated.