T Nation

19 Year Old In The NFL - Amazing!


[quote]lweber wrote:


What a stud! I hope he makes it. There’s an athlete who is actually a good role model. Great story.

This kid is my new hero.

His freshmen year of college, he had 20 solo tackles… he was 16 at the time.


not to be racist, but is he truly 19? i know i played against some “18” year olds etc. in highschool and they weret truely there age, it was just the age givin to them when they came from jamaica, because they didnt have birth certificates, one guy had grey in his beard for gods sake. Again not trying to start a race war or anything, just throwing it out there, either way, an amazing feat and a great athlete none the less.

I’m not into football but that’s pretty cool. He’d be a good role model for a lot of people.

And a comment on young people going grey: My step grandma’s hair started going white when she was 17. Born in america so not like you can really say they screwed up by a few years on the birth certificate there.

yes i know grey hair is different for everybody but they definitel werent the age that they said. Also these individuals were givin jan.1st birthdays, anyways just food for thought, not trying to undercut his acheivements.

Looking at his face I can see him being 19. That is incredible though…16 playing division 1 football…i couldn’t imagine it. He’s a great role model

[quote]Lilium wrote:
I’m not into football but that’s pretty cool. He’d be a good role model for a lot of people.

And a comment on young people going grey: My step grandma’s hair started going white when she was 17. Born in america so not like you can really say they screwed up by a few years on the birth certificate there.[/quote]

The starting QB on my H.S. team back in 1985 was naturally bald. Actually, his hair was just REALLY thin and balding. To me he freaking looked like he was 35. He had huge, hairy forearms. Man among boys.

I didnt read the article, but thats incredible. And yes, from the picture I could see how he’s 19, although he does look a little older.

Amobi Okoye

(Here’s the article, for all those who are annoyed as I am at the “registration required” tomfoolery.)

INDIANAPOLIS, Feb. 25 - As he made his round of scheduled appointments, filling out forms in one place and sitting for a mug shot at another, Amobi Okoye tugged at the straps of the black backpack that he was wearing.

The 19-year-old Okoye looked like a freshman at orientation. And in a way he was Saturday, only Okoye was at the N.F.L. scouting combine, strolling the hallways of the Indiana Convention Center, and everywhere he went the ice-breaking question was not where he was from but where he was headed.

Okoye, a 6-foot-2 defensive tackle, has an undergraduate degree in psychology from Louisville and an upside that makes him one of the more intriguing prospects in the N.F.L. draft.

What to make of a likely first-round draft pick who is emotionally mature and physically immature? In evaluating Okoye, scouts study his 302-pound frame and salivate at the thought of what he may look like when he is all grown up.

“Obviously, everybody is intrigued because he’s 19 years old,” said Mike Mayock, the NFL Network’s lead draft analyst. He added, “I know a lot of teams that think he’s a top-15 type player.”

Okoye, who turns 20 in June, has the stride of a guy in a rush, as befits somebody who has always been a couple of steps ahead of his peer group.

A dual prodigy in academics and athletics, he entered primary school in Anambra, Nigeria, when he was 2 ? and began high school in the United States when he was 12. He appeared in his first high school varsity game at 13, signed with Louisville when he was 15, played for the Cardinals as a true freshman at 16 and, this year, became the youngest player in Senior Bowl history.

“He doesn’t like to be bored,” his mother, Edna Okoye, said, with a laugh.

It must run in the family; Edna Okoye is in nursing school after spending years as a school administrator.

Speaking by telephone from Huntsville, Ala., she said: “Amobi was an active child. By the time he was 7 months old, he was walking. I remember when he was 4, he would wake up in the middle of the night to study. He’d go back to sleep then wake up at 5:30 to study some more. He had very good study habits right from the start.”

Okoye became an ardent student of football when he was 12, shortly after moving with his parents and brother Arinze, who is 22 months older, to Huntsville, where an uncle already was living. After taking an aptitude test, Okoye was placed in the freshman class at Lee High.

To keep busy, he became involved in the R.O.T.C. club on campus and also tried track. In the spring of Okoye’s freshman year, an assistant football coach was a substitute in his homeroom class. The coach took one look at Okoye and suggested he try out for football.

Okoye’s father, Augustine, seconded the idea, telling his son: “You’re fat. You could use the exercise.” Despite not knowing a fourth down from the Fourth Estate, Okoye rearranged his class schedule to accommodate spring football practice.

“It was a rough first day,” he said, “but I stuck with it just to prove a lot of people wrong.”

Okoye played on both the offensive and defensive lines as a sophomore and earned all-state honors on both sides of the ball as a senior. “I guess I picked up on it pretty good,” he said with a chuckle.

When it came time to choose a college, “My dad was big on going to Harvard,” Okoye said. “I was big on playing football.” He had attended summer football camps at Louisville, and felt comfortable there.

“Not to downgrade Harvard,” Okoye said, “but I’m just saying Louisville had the best of both worlds for me as far as academics and athletics-wise.”

Okoye started out as a biology major with an eye toward entering medical school. But after playing in 13 games as a true freshman and starting one game as a sophomore, he changed his major to psychology with an eye toward graduating in time to enter the 2007 N.F.L. draft.

He graduated in December with a 3.0 grade-point average. On the football field, Okoye led the Cardinals’ defense as a senior with 55 tackles, 8 sacks and 3 forced fumbles. At the Senior Bowl, his teammates nicknamed him Phee, which was short for phenom.

Okoye’s football prowess has gotten in the way of graduate school, which he eventually plans to attend. “At Harvard,” he said, smiling.

Maurice Clarett, the former Ohio State running back, was around Okoye’s age when he dropped out of college. Clarett unsuccessfully sued the N.F.L. over its rule against drafting players until they were at least three years removed from their high school graduations.

The rule was designed to keep ill-prepared teenagers out of the league. Clarett thought he was the exception that Okoye has proved himself to be.

Okoye was asked what it is like to be looked upon as the anti-Clarett.

“I don’t know,” he said. “I mean, I guess it’s bad in his case when people say that, but I don’t see myself as that. I just see myself as Amobi Okoye.”

That guy is huge for 19!

What a specimen…

Wow. Just read the article. I hope he does well, he seems like the type of kid who deserves it.

Good for him. He looks like he deserves it.


I see he’s pretty damn bright too. Can someone explain to me what the Grade Point Average means. I’ve always wondered that.

students grades in class are based on letters and those letters are coverted to numbers…


then for each class the numbers are added up and then basically divided by the number of classes you take…

and yeah thats incredible for that kid…hopefully he does well in anything he decides to do…