One-on-One With Amen Ogbongbemiga

I spoke with recent Oklahoma State commitment Amen Ogbongbemiga on Triple Play Sports Radio on Tuesday. The 6-1, 207-pound linebacker pledge set me straight on pronunciation on his name. It is Amen, just like after a prayer. The last name is Og-Bong-Ba-Mega. You can practice that because my gut feeling is that Amen is going to be one of those unique recruits that turns out to be a dynamic player.

He was born in Nigeria. His family moved to Houston and the United States when he was four. He barely remembers his time in his native country. In 2011, the family moved to Calgary, Alberta, Canada because his parents were starting a business there. Amen has plans to major in business or accounting, and this young man is a good student and very well spoken.

Athletically he is a 4.6 in the forty, consistently at 4.2 in the 5-10-5 shuttle drill, and had a 36-inch vertical jump.

You can tell he takes his football serious. He plays two seasons in Canada as he is part of a three-time Alberta Province champion at Notre Dame High School in the fall and then plays for a strong club team in Hilltoppers Midget program in the spring.

Here are three highlights from our interview session on Triple Play Sports.

How would you describe the recruiting process and how it went for you?
AO: It all started like about a month ago. I was originally supposed to go to Oregon but I thought the Oklahoma State camp was more promising and I just wanted to prove myself. I went to the camp and I talked to Coach (Glenn) Spencer and I told him in our visit that I was going to prove myself and work hard today and I'm going to get this offer. That is exactly what I did. We had a couple of circuit (drills) and some one-on-ones and I did well and that is eventually why I got it. The reason that I made the commitment was that they made me really feel that they wanted me at their school. I enjoyed the process and I'm sure that is where I am going.

How important to all of this was your connection of having your second cousin, Emmanuel Ogbah, on the team and a big star at Oklahoma State?
AO: He helped get me the opportunity and was telling his coaches that they should give this kid a shot, but that being said they weren't going to give a scholarship to anyone and I still had to prove myself. He did tell me that he loves his experience at Oklahoma State, but he still said it was up to me where I wanted to go for the next four or five years. That really helped me in showing me that he is not so bias about his school and he wanted me to make my own decision. He told me about it and that was really good. He started out here not playing and sitting out his first year and then working really hard to get to where he is now. It opened my mind that if I work hard I can make my goal.

Okay, I know you said football is football, but there are all the different rules in Canada. The field is 150 yards with the end zones, three downs to make a first down, 12 players on each side, and everybody can be in motion and toward the line of scrimmage. Of all the different rules in Canada, which was hardest for you to deal with?
AO: Honestly, I would say it is between the motion and the three downs. You know it is not three and out. You are out there for two plays or move on to special teams or whatever. It is like I said there may be a little difference in the game and rules, but a good football player is a good football player. I just have to adjust and then do my best. I got used to it.

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