Before he was drafted Thursday night, wide receiver Will Fuller's only contact with the Texans was at the NFL Combine.
His connection with head coach Bill O'Brien, however, goes back much further.
"I've known him for a while," O'Brien said Thursday. "He came to our camp when I was at Penn State. I don't know if we were the first to offer him, but I know we saw this guy at our high school camp when I was the head coach there. We offered him right away there when we saw him run around and do some of the things he was doing in high school."
Fuller did originally committed to Penn State, where O'Brien was head coach during the 2012 and 2013 seasons. The Philadelphia native later switched to the University of Notre Dame, where he played for three years.
"I loved the whole coaching staff," Fuller said Thursday. "I loved everything about Penn State. It was close to my hometown, but Coach O'Brien, he already had coached us and his knowledge of the football game and what he did with the Patriots a couple years before, just his knowledge of the offense and how he could have put me in the best position to be the best. I feel bad that things didn't hit because I feel like we would've had something special at Penn State."
That was back in 2012.
Now four years later, the O'Brien and Fuller finally have an opportunity to work together. The Texans head coach describes Fuller as a bright, hardworking guy from a good family who came highly recommended from Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly.
"He does many more things than what he did in high school," O'Brien said. "He's a stronger guy. His football experience has really grown. He's learned a lot at Notre Dame. One of the things that we like about him is he's eager to learn. We're excited about getting him here and getting going with him."
During this three-year career at Notre Dame, Fuller had 144 catches for 2,512 yards receiving and 30 touchdowns. He finished second to Michael Floyd (37) for most receiving touchdowns in school history.
See photos from Will Fuller's career at Notre Dame and Houston Texans.