Larry Ogunjobi, from Ragsdale High School…..
Although most people can’t begin to pronounce his last name, anyone who has attended a game at Jerry Richardson Stadium knows the greatness of the Greensboro native.
*****Charlotte’s all-time leader in tackles, tackles for loss and sacks, will take his talents to the 68th annual Reece’s Senior Bowl in Mobile, Ala., on Jan. 28, putting his art on display in front of all 32 NFL teams.*****
+++++ESPN2 and NFL Network will broadcast live from the practices and NFL Network will carry the game beginning at 1:30 p.m. CT.+++++
With the accepted invitation to the Senior Bowl, the 6-foot-3, 297-pound redshirt senior will become the first Charlotte player to be represented in the prestigious game. The Senior Bowl invites the top 110 seniors or redshirt juniors in college football, giving the players an extra game to showcase their talents. But this is not the first time Ogunjobi has been recognized at the national level.
This season, Ogunjobi was named to the Bednarik Award watch list, an award highlighting the best defensive player in college football, while also being named for the Outland Trophy, representing the most outstanding interior lineman in the nation. With all these preseason accolades, Ogunjobi definitely lived up to the preseason hype.
In his last season with the 49ers, the redshirt senior rounded up the nation’s best run-stop percentage among all NCAA interior linemen, according to Pro Football Focus, while also being named the SB Nation’s “C-USA’s Most Interesting Man.” Along with those recognitions, Ogunjobi is first in tackles in C-USA games with 53 tackles, averaging 6.6 per game, while recording 65 tackles this season to lead the conference.
Ogunjobi will leave Charlotte’s defense with a big shoe to fill, leading the program in tackles (217) and sacks (13). With all of these records being made by the interior lineman, none of these accomplishments could have been done without being on the field; which he holds a record for as well. 46 games. That’s how many college games the Charlotte 49ers have played since starting their program, which coincidentally marks the amount of games the North Carolina native has played.
One last stat. Ogunjobi will leave the program with a school record, 49 tackles for loss, fittingly for the player who was the first to wear the honorable No.49 jersey against Campbell back in 2013 in Charlotte’s first ever football game.
The redshirt senior, who didn’t start playing football until sophomore year in high school, and was only a two-star recruit coming out of high school, will now have the chance to become the first ever Charlotte football player drafted with a strong outing at the Reece’s Senior Bowl on Jan. 28.
ESPN2 and NFL Network will broadcast live from the practices and NFL Network will carry the game beginning at 1:30 p.m. CT.
*****All of the above from the great Charlotte 49ers football web site and check out the outstanding Larry Ogunjobi family photo from the web site when you CLICK HERE…
Charlotte 49ers athletics web site is www.ninertimes.com.
+++++Some very interesting background info on Larry Ogunjobi from the Charlotte Observer and Pat James:
The Yorubas of southwest Nigeria compose one of Africa’s largest ethnic groups south of the Sahara Desert. Their children shape their world view.
A well-brought-up child internalizes the Yoruba way, beginning with a naming ceremony, on the eighth day after a child is born.
Mercy and Larry Ogunjobi Sr. weren’t afforded such an opportunity.
A year after following her husband from Nigeria to the United States, Mercy found herself in a Livingston, N.J., hospital, giving birth to the couple’s first child.
A name hadn’t crossed their minds.
The first moments with their newborn boy were interrupted when a nurse requested a name for the birth certificate. In a panic, Larry Sr. rattled off ideas.
Every Nigerian name carries meaning, a significance that follows throughout one’s life and potentially one’s children’s, as well. Mercy and Larry Sr. refused to settle.
Soon, they arrived at one: Olumide. Translation: Our savior has come.
Ogunjobi was big as a child, bigger than most. By the time her son reached high school, Mercy was worried.
Eating and playing video games all day, Ogunjobi gained weight rapidly, peaking at roughly 350 pounds before his sophomore year.
“You’re killing yourself,” he remembers his parents saying. “You’ve got stop this.”
A first-generation American competing in his first organized sport as a freshman wrestler at Ragsdale, Ogunjobi didn’t understand the importance of hard work and attending practice daily. His coach dubbed him “Lazy Larry,” a nickname he despised.
After earning his first football award, he’d never be called lazy again.
Football workouts at 7 a.m. were just the start. Then came the neighborhood jogs and post-practice trips to the YMCA. No longer on the wrestling team, Ogunjobi joined his former teammates for their workouts, too.
“It simply became something you’d expect of Larry,” says Ragsdale football coach Tommy Norwood.
Larry Olumide Ogunjobi
“You can have a name that can say you’re XYZ, but if you don’t ever do anything with your name, it’s just a name,” he says. “I feel like your name is what you make of it. Hopefully I’m on the right track of trying to make my name special.”
CLICK HERE to read all from Pat James at the Charlotte Observer and it is great read…