Ohio kicker first player with Down syndrome to score in college football game

NELSONVILLE, Ohio — A kicker for an Ohio community college football team made history by becoming the first player with Down syndrome to score a point in an NCAA or NJCAA game.

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Caden Cox, a freshman at Hocking College in southeastern Ohio, kicked an extra point in the Hawks’ game Sept. 11 against Sussex Community College. Cox had already made history by becoming the first player with Down syndrome to compete in a college football game. The extra point was icing on the cake.

Cox’s kick during Hocking College’s home opener came late in the Hawks’ 38-2 victory.

Hocking coach Ted Egger said it was an opportunity his player had been seeking since joining the team.

“It was a great moment, it was a really wonderful day for our program and for him and his family and he’s been practicing every day,” Eggar told WTAP. “He comes out every day and works really hard. He got the opportunity to go into a game and kick and it didn’t faze him, and he went out and did what he does every day in practice and put it through the uprights and it was a really special moment.”

Cox also was a kicker in high school at Fremont Ross High School in Fremont and earned player of the game honors as a senior during his team’s homecoming game, the Lancaster Eagle-Gazette reported.

His older brother, Zane Cox, was also a kicker and played on Hocking College’s inaugural football team in 2015, the newspaper reported. Zane Cox is currently an assistant coach at the University of Louisiana-Monroe.