MU Football Player Makes Big Hit with Kids

1 decade 3 years 5 months ago Monday, September 04 2006 Sep 4, 2006 Monday, September 04, 2006 2:23:16 PM CDT September 04, 2006 in Tiger Talk

Saunders volunteers with Big Brothers Big Sisters, and has paired up with Cecil for the past 6 months.

"Well, at first, it was for a class. We had to do a certain many hours, and they had a sheet of like, all the different stuff we had to do," explained Saunders. "And we could pick whatever we wanted, and this sounded the most interesting to do. And then, after the class, I just kept doing it because it was a lot of fun."

Saunders spends 3 hours a week with Cecil and Cecil's younger brother, Chris. The two can be a handful, so Saunders sometimes calls for backup, like friend and teammate sophomore tight end Chase Coffman.

Cecil receives advice from his role model, but Saunders also appreciates what Cecil does for him.

"It helped me out a lot, just keeping my head on straight," said Saunders, "just knowing that someone's looking up to you out there, and just doing the right things, making the right choices in your life."

For Cecil, looking up to Saunders means eyeing a future sport.

"We go to Chuck E Cheese's and play basketball," he said. They also swim together and play football.

Saunders isn't the only member of the MU football team involved with Big Brothers Big Sisters. Coach Gary Pinkel started helping them when he coached at the Univesity of Toledo in Ohio.

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