Stanford's academics swayed Amajoyi

Chike Amajoyi said academics is the reason he chose Stanford University over Washington.

Chike Amajoyi said academics is the reason he chose Stanford University over Washington.


"I compared Stanford to Washington in undergraduate studies and Stanford came out on top in just about everything," said Amajoyi, the star running back from San Bernardino Aquinas. "That was a major factor."


Amajoyi made his oral commitment to Stanford on Wednesday night during an in-home visit from new Cardinal coach Jim Harbaugh.


As a football player, the 6-foot, 220-pound Amajoyi was a marvel this season. He ran for 2,290 yards and 27 touchdowns. On defense he had 114 tackles as a linebacker.


But Amajoyi also is a tremendous student, with a 3.9 grade point average and a 2000 score on the new version of the Scholastic Aptitude Test.


He will be only 17 when he graduates, having skipped a grade due to his lofty grades.


"Academics are No. 1 with the Amajoyis and football is No. 2," said Aquinas coach Josh Henderson. "The Amajoyi family is a little different about the way they make decisions. They sit down as a family and discuss the pros and cons."


Henderson said the Amajoyis held Chike out of football until his sophomore year at Aquinas until he was up to speed academically. They also did the same thing this year with the fourth Amajoyi boy, Uche, who will play in the fall.


Two other Amajoyi boys also headed north to play college football, basing their choices primarily on academics. The oldest brother, Obie, played at Cal. The next-oldest, Dozie, is now at UC Davis.


Amajoyi spoke highly of both Stanford coach Harbaugh and Tyrone Willingham, the Washington coach. As a former Stanford head coach, Willingham knows as well as anyone about Stanford's high academic standards.


There are other pluses on The Farm, Amajoyi said.


"The campus is beautiful and I felt comfortable with the players I had contact with," he said. "They really made me feel like part of the team and I felt like I could make a good transition into college there."


Amajoyi will study pre-med at Stanford. His eventual goal is to become a team doctor for a professional sports team.


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