Apr 29, 2010

The Tennessee Titans nabbed Florida State safety and Rhodes Scholar Myron Rolle in the sixth round of the NFL Draft on Saturday against quiet concern over his commitment to the game.

Rolle graduated in 2 1/2 years from Florida State, where he played safety for three years. He chose to skip his senior year after being awarded the Rhodes Scholarship, an honor that only 32 men and women garner every year and requires study at Oxford University.Rolle spent this past football season in Oxford studying for a graduate degree in medical anthropology. Yet, the Titans still selected him with the 207th overall pick – and over questions from multiple NFL teams, scouts and executives about his commitment level because of his decision to accept the Rhodes Scholarship.

In a radio interview on Monday – in between answering questions about American health care policy, the medical clinic he plans to build in the Bahamas, his love for football, and hanging with fellow Rhodes Scholar President Bill Clinton – he addressed the question of how having his commitment to football questioned made him feel.

"I was very surprised. I had anticipated I would get some questions. … but I didn't expect it to be as big, or as huge of an issue in the whole scheme of the draft process," he said. "The only thing I can say or try to convey is that I have a lot of options, I do, and I'm very proud I won the Rhodes Scholarship. Medical school will be in my future 15 years from now, Lord willing … and being a politician is not out of the question either. But if I have all these options and I still choose to play football, that must mean that I really love it. … I really do want it, and I have to show it."

Congratulations to Mr. Rolle.  I'm glad he chose to take the Rhodes Scholarship because through it he finds himself in an even more elite group than just being in the NFL.  He is in a group that has produced Presidents, senators, generals, and countless other brilliant people.  He serves as a perfect representation of his parents and what is possible if you are willing to put in the work.  He stands as the perfect role model to our young boys as to what they can achieve.  He has the perfect backup plan!


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