Thursday, 18 March 2010
Amobi Okoye (born June 10, 1987) is an American football defensive tackle for the Houston Texans of the National Football League. He was drafted by the Texans 10th overall in the 2007 NFL Draft. He played college football at Louisville.
Okoye was born in Anambra State, Nigeria, He moved to Huntsville, Alabama, United States when he was 12 years old. He first started playing football as a sophomore at Lee High School, knowing virtually nothing about the game.
At age 15, Okoye chose the University of Louisville over Harvard, privileging the strong football program of the former over the academic reputation of the latter. At Louisville, Okoye majored in biology. He later switched his major to psychology and graduated a semester early, thereby completing his degree in three and a half years. At 16, he became the youngest player in the NCAA.
Okoye was drafted by the Houston Texans as the tenth pick of the first round of the 2007 NFL draft. He is the youngest player to ever be drafted in the first round of the NFL Draft at only 19 years old. He was the highest draft pick to come out of the University of Louisville since the AFL-NFL merger.
Okoye was named Defensive Rookie of the Month for September 2007 after leading the AFC with four sacks. He is the youngest player ever to receive the award.
In 2009, Amobi led a group of NFL players on a community-building trip to Nigeria. His foundation - Amobi Okoye Foundation - sponsored the trip to the country entitled, “Athletes in the Diaspora: Community Interventions.”
The Amobi Okoye Foundation provides hope to kids and communities through a series of programs and services designed to mentor youth and young adults; mitigate childhood obesity and build stronger communities around the globe. The Foundation's global effort, "C.A.T.E" (Changing Africa through Education) provides education scholarships, funds the building of clean water wells, and supports healthcare initiatives in developing parts of Nigeria.
Sources: Wikipedia, Fanblogtexans, Progress Avenue