SI Feature Story
from 12/03/12- worth a read to understand where he comes from
In late October 2010, BYU was beating Wyoming 16--10 when coach Bronco Mendenhall decided to conduct an experiment on the opening kickoff of the third quarter. So Ezekiel Ansah trotted onto a field during a football game for the first time in his life. "It was scary," Ansah says. "I was trying to remember what I had been told, but it wasn't easy, especially with a lot of people screaming and yelling."
It should have been easy, because his instructions were simple: "We put him right in the middle of the field and said, 'Whoever catches the ball, run right to that guy,'" recalls Mendenhall. When the ball was kicked, Ansah did as he was told, but he didn't tackle the return man. Still, as he jogged back to the sideline his teammates and coaches mobbed him, shouting Zig-gy! while they smacked his helmet and slapped his butt. Without even realizing it, Ansah had taken out a trio of Wyoming blockers. He'd simply run through them.
"What?" he said.
"You just blew up three guys," players yelled. Ziggy shrugged.
The next day Mendenhall watched the game film with one thought running through his head: We have to find more ways to get Ansah on the field. "Ziggy was not only knocking down players, he was 10 yards in front of anyone else on our team," Mendenhall says. "This is a guy I never took seriously, and now we've had more NFL personnel in our facility this year than in my previous eight years put together."
"When the combines come," said one NFL scout who has been following Ansah since the beginning of the season, "Ziggy will be one of those players where people will be saying, Who in the hell is this guy?"