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Long snapper Cole McCutcheon’s wait is over

Cole McCutcheon has waited three seasons for this opportunity and he doesn’t plan on letting it distract him.

What will be going through the senior’s mind as he takes the field as Army’s top long snapper in the season opener at Louisiana-Monroe on Sept. 2?

“Hopefully, I won’t be thinking too much honestly,” McCutcheon said. “I like to keep my head pretty cool and as empty as I can and not get into the moment too much and take it as a practice rep.”

After three years of working as “understudy” to Ryan Aguilar, McCutcheon will snap on the Black Knights’ extra points, field goals and punts.

“What I learned from Ryan while he was here was how to practice like a professional in a sense where each rep that you take in practice needs to treated like a game rep,” McCutcheon said. “That’s the best way to prepare for that moment. In his case, it was double overtime against Navy and you are snapping the game-winning field goal.”

McCutcheon’s practice reps are quality over quantity. McCutcheon said he normally snaps less than 40 times a practice under the direction of special teams coach Sean Saturnio.

“Scheme-wise, he is incredibly smart, you’ve seen that over the years with all the success we’ve had in the special teams area with the specialists,” McCutcheon said. “He’s also really good coaching the mental game behind the specialists. The way I talk about specialists, I like it to golfers in a sense that it is a very mental repetitive process. He’s really good at understanding that and coaching us up on the field and off the field at handling that side of the game.”

McCutcheon started long snapping in the spring of eighth grade. Originally from Richmond, Va., McCutcheon earned his first offer from Army out of O’Connor High School in Phoenix, Ariz. He’s been the ultimate team player for Black Knights, impressing with his work ethic the first three years. McCutcheon has strived to be as consistent as possible and it continues to show this preseason.

“He’s looked great this whole (preseason) camp,” Army senior punter Billy Boehlke said. “He’s super-consistent, (snaps) really good balls, understands the schemes really well. I’m excited to see him get out there and play.”

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