Published: 11:26 PM, Mon Jul 30, 2012
Seventy-First's Emmanuel Ukhueligbe chooses football over soccer
You only have to glance at Emmanuel Ukhueligbe's name to realize he didn't grow up in one of the neighborhoods along Raeford or Cliffdale Roads.
His father is from Nigeria, and while his mother was serving in the military in Germany, Ukhueligbe was born. His family moved to North Carolina when he was only two.
At an early age, he learned that his father liked soccer, and his mother told him that was the game his dad wanted him to play.
"I didn't want to play soccer,'' Ukhueligbe said.
He didn't get into sports until he was in middle school, and because of his size, his friends persuaded him to try football.
At 6-foot and 217 pounds, he's already made an impression on Seventy-First coach Bob Paroli, who is considering starting the freshman at defensive end.
Asked if he's worried about the pressure of being a starter while only a freshman, Ukhueligbe said, "Coach told me you can't fear fear. I'm going to go in and not be scared, and do what they told me to do.''
- Earl Vaughan Jr.