By Brad Morris
Trentt Fulgham has always dreamed about playing football on Sunday.
And the recent Circleville graduate felt the best opportunity to do that was by committing to play for Youngstown State University, a Division I Football Championship Subdivision school.
“The recruiting process is more than people say it is. It’s not just about having the skill and size to play college ball, but it’s also about having the right connections and having people who know college coaches,” Fulgham said. “My connection was my old defensive line coach, Jeff Phillips, who is the brother of Youngstown State head coach Doug Phillips and Tom Phillips, who is Youngstown State’s director of football operations.
“The schools that were offering me to play football were also offering a dual opportunity for me to wrestle, but football is what I love most of all and I still have a dream of playing in the National Football League. I felt like Youngstown State affords me the best opportunity to get there. I also enjoyed the visit I had to campus, because their program felt like a family and where I belong.”
Fulgham was a second-team Mid-State League Buckeye Division selection this past season and helped the Circleville Tigers earn a spot in the state playoffs for the first time since 2013.
The offensive tackle believes his biggest strength is his mindset.
“I’m a person who hates to lose, so I don’t care who is in front of me. I’m coming to win, and I’ll do whatever it takes to do that,” he said. “When I get to Youngstown State, I will definitely be working on my technique a lot because, let’s be honest, my size helped me to stand out so much in high school.
“I didn’t go up against players on the other team who were my size and build very often, so that allowed me to get away with some mistakes at times. I won’t be able to get away with those mistakes going forward, so I really want to work on my technique, my strength and conditioning and that is going to be my main focus when I get to Youngstown State.”
Fulgham plans on majoring in business administration at Youngstown State.
“I would like to be able to handle my own welding business, if my dream to play in the NFL doesn’t work out,” he said.
Fulgham capped his prep career by winning a Division II state championship at 285 pounds in mid-March. He became the fourth CHS grappler to earn a state title in program history, and he called the past couple of months “amazing” since he earned a spot in Circleville lore.
“The past few months have been amazing,” he said. “I’ve had adults, I’ve had kids and fellow wrestlers that I saw along the way stop and talk to me about how amazing it was to see me win.
“I love the feeling of that and being part of the history of Circleville High School, forever. Circleville has shown nothing but support to me along my four years there and I’m grateful to meet the people I have met in the high school and community.”
Fulgham grew up an Ohio State fan and hopes to make the traveling roster for Youngstown State when the Penguins travel to the Horseshoe on Sept. 9 to play the Buckeyes.
“I would love to walk down that tunnel and be on the field, because Ohio State has been the team I’ve watched all my life and the team that I have always cheered for,” he said. “It’s going to be weird cheering against them for the first time this season.”