Ekom Udofia Named U.S. Army All-American

The Army All-American tour made an appearance in Scottsdale (Ariz.) Tuesday to honor TheInsiders #45 player in the nation, <b>Ekom Udofia</b>. Udofia has been selected as one of the 78 blue chips to play in the U.S. Army All-American Bowl on January 5th, 2005 in San Antonio. We spoke with the elite DT about the honor and his recruitment.

The ceremony held in the Chaparral library brought out a plethora of local media, Firebirds' staff, student body, and even a local celebrity in Cardinals signal caller, Josh McCown. All eyes were on Udofia as he was bombarded with questions from all angles on what it felt like to earn such a prestigious honor as being selected to play in such a quality event.

"This is a great honor," said Udofia. "I just want to thank everyone for supporting me; my coaches, teammates, and especially my family. This is a great day for everyone involved in the Chaparral program and everyone that is close to me. I want to thank the Army for holding me in such high regard and placing such an honor on me. To have someone like Josh McCown, a professional football player, come to the school to show his support really makes me feel good. This is a dream come true for me."

McCown commented on what having Udofia selected for the game meant for everyone involved. "I am so glad to come out here and show my support for such a great person and great player like Ekom Udofia. (turning to the student body) You should all be so proud to have such a quality person involved with this school and this is a win for all of you, as much as it is him, because I am sure a lot of you have helped and supported Ekom along the way. It is great for me to be here representing the Cardinals to send one of Arizona's own off to Texas to represent our state."

Udofia was the only player selected from the Grand Canyon State to participate in the game.

Ron Estabrook was very proud to have coached Udofia for so many years. "It is great to see so many people think so highly of Ekom and they are all right in doing that. He is a player and a person who strives for discipline on and off the field and gets out and shows support for his teammates. He is the captain of our team and every one of our players looks up to him as our leader."

Local representative for the Army, Staff Sergeant Michael Gordon, echoed much of what everyone else had to say. "This is great for the community of Scottsdale and the U.S. Army to be receiving recognition for such a great thing. The selection committee have been going from city-to-city selecting only the finest young men to participate in this game and Ekom definitely fits the same mold all of the others do."

On to recruiting, we were able to pull Udofia and Coach Estabrook aside to talk about schools of interest.

When asked what school was recruiting Udofia the hardest, Estabrook replied, "They are all doing a fantastic job so you can't really say one has been over another. All of the staffs have been very persistent. LSU dropped off because of a lack of interest so now Ekom just has it down to a handful of schools. Arizona State has been calling a lot about him and I think he plans on going on an unofficial trip there one weekend."

Udofia already took an unofficial trip to in-state rival Arizona last weekend for the Wisconsin game. "I had a good time," he said. "I got to do everything the official visitors did. Everything was great except for the rain delay."

The DT had made a trip to Stanford a couple weeks ago to see his brother, Udeme Udofia, play against San Jose State. "It was nice to go up there but I didn't really do much. We were really just there to see my brother. I am going back there for my official visit this weekend when they play USC."

He will visit USC October 9th, Oklahoma October 23rd, Oklahoma State October 30th, and Miami Decmber 4th. "I do not have a favorite right now. After I take all of my visits I will compare the schools and make a choice."

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