Lawrence Okoye in 2012
No. 98 San Francisco 49ers
|Date of birth:October 6, 1991|
|Place of birth: Croydon, England|
|High school: London (UK) Whitgift|
|Undrafted in 2013|
|No regular season or postseason appearances|
|Roster status: Injured Reserve|
Career NFL statistics as of 2013
|Born||6 October 1991|
|Height||1.98 m (6 ft 6 in)|
|Weight||138 kg (304 lb)|
|Sport||Track and field|
|Achievements and titles|
|Personal best(s)||68.24 m|
Lawrence Okoye (born 6 October 1991) is a British track and field athlete and an American football player for the San Francisco 49ers of the National Football League. He is the British record holder in the discus event and had a promising career in junior rugby union.
Born in Croydon in south London to Nigerian parents of the Igbo ethnic group, Okoye was educated at St. Mary's Roman Catholic Junior School, a Voluntary Aided Roman Catholic state primary school in Croydon, followed by Whitgift School, an independent school for boys (also in Croydon), in South London. Lawrence is also a keen academic, with an outstanding offer from Oxford University Law school which he is keen to take up in the future. He played rugby union as a winger for Whitgift School playing in the Daily Mail Schools Rugby Under 18 final at Twickenham in 2010, he was also a member of the academy teams of both London Irish and London Wasps.
Okoye began training full-time in the discus in September 2010 after a promising career as a junior rugby union player. In his first international outing he came sixth in the discus throw at the 2010 World Junior Championships in Athletics. He won a gold medal at the 2011 European Athletics U23 Championships in July 2011 at the age of 19.
Later on that season, Okoye threw a new British record of 67.63m at the McCain Jumps & Throws Fest. He then bettered that mark with another British record of 68.24 m at the Hallesche Werfertage meeting in May 2012.
In the 2012 Summer Olympics, Okoye competed in the discus, reaching the final with a throw of 65.28m. In the final he finished in twelfth place with a throw of 61.03m. After the competition he expressed disappointment with his placing in the final.
2013 NFL Combine
|Ht||Wt||40-yd dash||10-yd split||20-yd split||20-ss||3-cone||Vert||Broad||BP|
|6 ft 5 in||304 lb||4.84 s||1.67 s||2.75 s||4.65 s||6.69 s||36 in||10 ft 7 in||30 reps|
|All values from Central Florida Pro Day.|
2013 NFL Draft
In March 2013, Okoye announced his intentions to play in the National Football League, despite having never played American football in high school or college; he stated that five NFL teams expressed interest in him, and planned to sign after the 2013 NFL Draft. At the NFL Super Regional Combine, Okoye ran the 40-yard dash in 4.78 seconds, while scoring 36 inches on the vertical jump and 10 feet, 7 inches on the broad jumps. Okoye was signed on April 27 by the San Francisco 49ers. On August 27, Okoye was placed on Injured Reserve after sustaining an injury in the preseason.
- Okoye Lawrence. IAAF. Retrieved on 2012-05-21.
- Chadband, Ian (14 July 2012). "London 2012 Olympics: Team GB's Lawrence Okoye hopes to repay headmaster's faith with discus medal". The Daily Telegraph.
- "Discus finalist Okoye considers rugby return after Olympics disappointment". Daily Mail (London). 15 August 2012.
- Anna Kessel (5 August 2011). "Discus thrower Lawrence Okoye has belief to be a world beater". London: The Guardian. Retrieved 21 August 2011.
- German discus star Harting over 70 metres in Halle. European Athletics (2012-05-20). Retrieved on 2012-05-21.
- Hart, Simon (7 August 2012). "Lawrence Okoye bows out of London 2012 discus final". The Telegraph. Retrieved 31 August 2012.
- Copeland, Kareem (31 March 2013). "Lawrence Okoye hopes to move from Olympics to NFL". National Football League. Retrieved 31 March 2013.
- Brooks, Bucky (9 April 2013). "Lawrence Okoye, Cody Davis shine at Super Regional Combine". National Football League. Retrieved 10 April 2013.
- Wesseling, Chris (27 April 2013). "Lawrence Okoye to 49ers leads free-agent rookie deals". National Football League. Retrieved 27 April 2013.