Its been years since the Giants defense has been feared across the NFL. The Giants last Super Bowl victory was largely won because of the constant pressure on Tom Brady.
The Giants need an effective player that can get to the quarterback. The league once had a Nigerian Nightmare on offense. Maybe this year, we can get our own Nigerian Nightmare to our defense.
The player I am talking about is Illinois edge rusher Oluwole Betiku (known as Wole and pronouced WAA LEE).
Betiku was born and raised in Nigeria. He didn't get to America and start playing or learning the game until his junior year in high school. In those 2 years of high school football in California, he quickly made a name for himself. He had 17 sacks in his senior year and was rated the 15th best high school player in the nation and had 21 scholarship offers from all the top schools before picking USC.
Things didn't go as Betiku had hoped at USC. He found himself on the sidelines and rarely playing in his first two years. Things got even worse in his 3rd year- a season completely lost to a hip injury.
One thing that Betiku did do while in college was study. So much so that he graduated from USC in 3 years. He also used his down time with the hip injury to become very good at painting and as a musician.
With football eligibility still left, he met with former NFL coach Lovie Smith, who convinced him to join Smith and play football for Illinois.
The change of scenerio worked for Wole. After 3 games this past season, he lead all of college football in 2 categories-sacks (with 6) and tackles for losses (with 7.5).
Wole would go on to finish the season with 10 sacks, 13 tackles for losses and 7 QB hurries as he was named 3rd team All Big 10.
Following the season, Wole made the decision to enter his name in this years draft. He was snubbed and not invited to the Combine. He is listed at 6' 3" and 250 pounds. Some scouts see him as a weak side DE, and others as an OLB.
He is a smart player that got a very late start in learning the American game of football. Clearly a player with the arrow pointing up.
I have attached a 7 minute video that talks about Wole, his life in Nigeria, and his transformation as a college player when he joined Lovie Smith at Illinois.
An important draft note regarding Wole- following the college season, Wole's Illini position coach- Austin Clark- left and joined Brian Flores as the outside linebacker coach for the Miami Dolphins.
Expect Wole to be drafted on Day 3 and clearly the Dolphins now have the best insight on what Wole can do in the NFL. Link
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