Okoye may play this season
Having just turned 16 years old earlier this summer, University of Louisville
true freshman defensive lineman Amobi Okoye may be the youngest player in NCAA
Division One football this season.
Originally from Anambra, Nigeria, Okoye is a rare and unique talent despite
his age. Blessed with incredible strength and maturity beyond his 16
years, Amobi finds himself listed on the two deep chart at defensive tackle
entering the game in Lexington.
Last season as a senior at Lee High School in Huntsville, AL, Okoye made 60
tackles and had 9 quarterback sacks, earning first team all-state honors.
Following Tuesday's practice, Okoye spoke with the media about his first few
weeks as a college student and football player.
Q: Are you surprised being listed on the two deep this early in
Amobi Okoye (91) (ITV)
Okoye: I'd say I'm quite a bit surprised but I came with the
heart to play. I actually thought when I came out here it is different but
I think I can do it.
Q: What's the bigger adjustment for you from high school to
college, in the classroom or on the field ?
Okoye: I'd say both the classroom and on the field. In college,
everything's a whole lot faster. Then in class, basically you just have to
study. That's what I'm trying to do.
Q: It's been reported that you're related to former NFL standout
Christian Okoye. Is that accurate?
Okoye: We're not really related. It's hard to explain it
but this is the way my dad put it....back home you can lean over a fence and
literally shake Christian Okoye's hand. I never got to meet him but my dad
said when he was back home they were neighbors.
Q: Have your teammates given you any nicknames?
Okoye: No, they just call me AO, my initials.
Q: How did you get started playing football?
Okoye: My ninth grade year I was in a homeroom class and my
buddy and my coach was a substitute and they talked me into it and I just
decided to get out there and play.
Q: Talk about your recruiting process.
Okoye: He [Coach Petrino] recruited me and Coach Whitt recruited me
at the same time.
Q: What's your biggest asset on the field?
Okoye: I would say my strength. That's what's helping me
out on the field. [I bench press] about 405.
Q: The joke going around is that you don't shave yet. Are
you shaving now as a college man?
Okoye: [Laughing] I had a feeling that would come up. I
shaved like two weeks ago [for the first time].
Q: What does your name mean?
Okoye: Nobody knows Gods heart.