"It's hard that he's gone. For me, Lakeland football, Lakeland University, it's hard. You know we are a big family, there's only 900 kids here," said Sam Anderson, who plays defensive end and is also a freshman.
According to the Sheboygan County Sheriff's Office, O'Neal had last been seen Sunday morning in his dorm. His teammates started to get worried when he didn't show up later that night or the next morning.
"A couple of us went out to go find him. We looked everywhere. It was getting a little nerve-wracking that he hadn't been back," said Anderson.
"We had a lot of fun. He was a really good kid," said Anderson.
O'Neal was from North Carolina. He came to Lakeland to purpuse his football dream.
"That's all he did was come out here and play football. Cause that's what he cared about and that's what he loved," said Anderson.
Police do not believe there was anything criminal about his death. But Anderson said it will be hard to go back to playing on the field without him.
"That pond is about 15 feet from the football field," said Anderson. "He was just so close to what he loved the most."
The school is offering counselors to students. An autopsy still needs to be done to determine how O'Neal died.