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Ohio State QB Krenzel: 'It was meant to be'


Ohio State quarterback Craig Krenzel is carried across the field by teammates and fans after the Buckeyes beat Michigan, 14-9, in this Nov . 23, 2002 file photo, in Columbus.




Be­fore he helped save Ohio State’s cham­pi­on­ship sea­son, Craig Kren­zel wanted to save the world.

At OSU, the quar­ter­back con­ducted can­cer re­search, bal­anced the ti­tle run with a grad­u­ate-level course load of Mo­lec­u­lar Ge­net­ics 608, Mo­lec­u­lar Ge­net­ics 701, and Mi­cro­bi­ol­ogy, and grad­u­ated with a 3.75 GPA.

If the fall of 2002 taught him any­thing, it is that plans are best not writ­ten in ink.

To­day, Kren­zel, 31, is a part­ner at the Arthur Kren­zel Lett In­sur­ance Group in Dub­lin, Ohio, where he lives with his wife, Beth, and three chil­dren.

When he was re­leased by the Cin­cin­nati Ben­gals in 2006 af­ter blow­ing out his el­bow, Kren­zel still had de­signs on be­com­ing a doc­tor be­fore paus­ing to re­con­sider. He had watched his older brother, Brian, an or­tho­pe­dic sur­geon, grind through med­i­cal school and, as a new father, de­cided the life was not for him.

“I had the for­tune or mis­for­tune of see­ing him go­ing through that,” said Kren­zel, who went 24-3 as a starter at OSU and was drafted by the Chi­cago Bears in the fifth round of the 2004 NFL draft. “I wasn’t re­ally that ex­cited about go­ing to school for four years, and then a four-year res­i­dency, and a one-year fel­low­ship. … There’s a lot of ways in this world to make a liv­ing.”

So he be­came a real es­tate in­ves­tor, then switched over to the in­sur­ance busi­ness just be­fore the mar­ket crashed.

“I didn’t see any­thing com­ing,” Kren­zel said of the re­ces­sion. “It was just for­tu­itous that I didn’t en­joy what I was do­ing.”

It was the big­gest au­di­ble in a ca­reer of them.

Kren­zel was the mae­stro of the Buck­eyes’ cham­pi­on­ship sea­son, though pi­geon­hol­ing him as the gritty man­ager of the tal­ent around him be­lies his place in school his­tory.

Un­can­nily com­posed when the spot­light glowed bright­est, his fourth-and-1 game-win­ning heave to Mi­chael Jen­kins at Pur­due was just one among an as­sem­bly line of clutch plays.

In 2002, like with his life to­day, ev­ery­thing just seemed to fall into place.

“When I look at it, there’s def­i­nitely that aura that it was meant to be,” Kren­zel said.

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