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Wyatt said his grandpa’s wife Carol would film Willie after Ohio State games congratulating Wyatt on his performance. Willie had struggled with health problems for years. Wyatt knew his death was coming, but it was still tough, especially because it happened during the coronavirus pandemic.
“For the most part, me and my family handled it well,” Wyatt said. “We focused on the positives of his life.”
Davis said his grandpa was a successful businessman who made more money after football than he did during his playing career. He inspired his grandkids with his work ethic.
“He didn’t let people put him in a box with just being an athlete,” Wyatt said. “He broke outside the box and was extremely successful.”
Willie also played a part in molding Wyatt into the type of fiery player he was. Wyatt has seen some film from his granddad’s playing days and is thankful he hasn’t had to play against someone like that, someone who once continued playing after having his front teeth knocked out, someone who rarely missed a game.
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Willie’s message to Wyatt was always: “Don’t be complacent. Don’t just be OK with getting the job done. If you’re just barely doing what you need to to do get by, then that’s how successful you’re going to be. Go 100 percent. Go above and beyond.”
That’s what Wyatt is trying to do, though the COVID-19 crisis has thrown him and the rest of the Buckeyes a curve. He’s from Bellflower, Calif., just southeast of downtown Los Angeles, and has access to weights but has struggled to find outdoor areas where he can train.
“The only thing that’s been tough is finding open fields and not getting kicked off of them,” Davis said. “I was able to find one in the last couple of days. Hopefully, it will stay consistent, and we’ll still be able to be on there.”
Davis said he’s just trying to keep busy, but “This truly is a weird time right now.”
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Of course, the question on everyone’s mind is, “Will there even be a football seasons in the fall?” Davis said he would do anything to have the season even if it meant playing in an empty Ohio Stadium.
“Would it suck not having fans there? Yes,” he said. “But would that affect me not playing the season? No. I just love the game of football. I miss being in that competitive-type atmosphere. Fans or no fans, I would want to play.”