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Canisius running back Ollison becomes 'special player'

Junior running back Qadree Ollison goes high into the air to find the end zone in a Monsignor Martin semifinal win over St. Francis last week. He helped the Crusaders finish 11-0 and win a title in beating Timon. (Photo by Jeff Barnes)

Sometimes, in just looking at someone play a game you can tell how good they really are without seeing a full body of work.

Then, once you see that full workload, it becomes even clearer just how good that player really is.

Running back Qadree Ollison is that player. The dynamic junior from Canisius High School has been the catalyst of a team that just finished unbeaten at 11-0 after a 28-20 win over Timon-St. Jude Saturday (Nov. 17) for its first Monsignor Martin High School Athletic Association championship since 2009.

With a school record 1,681 rushing yards and 22 touchdowns, Ollison has been the Crusaders’ go-to guy all season long whenever a big play is needed.

His head coach attributes it to just how determined he is to perform at a high level.

“He’s a special player,” said head coach Rich Robbins. “His work ethic is second to none. The things he [does] for us, on both sides of the ball, it makes him the best player in Western New York in my opinion.”

Senior offensive tackle Ryan Hunter, a Division I bound player himself, feels that having a dynamic player like Ollison just makes his job blocking that much easier.

“Qadree’s a superb athlete. You give him the ball, and who knows if he’ll break it or not,” he said. “As offensive linemen, we just make the hole and then he makes everything else happen.

For us, it’s a lot easier having someone else back there who you can trust, and know will find a hole, even if it’s not there, and could break it for a touchdown at any time.”

Their seems to be nothing but high praise for Ollison for what he can do on the field, but the junior refuses to give himself any of the credit for what he’s been able to do.

“The offensive line. I got to attribute it to them, man,” he said. “Without those guys I couldn’t do what I do.

Nobody could do what they do. Those guys open the holes for me, and I just take advantage of it.”

Of course, Ollison wasn’t going to complain that his coaches put the ball in his hands whenever they need a big play.

He said that it means a lot to him to know that his team believes in him as a player.

“It shows me that my coaches have faith in me, that they trust me,” said Ollison. “It really means a lot.”


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