Fascinating Myron Rolle Out to Prove His NFL Worth
INDIANAPOLIS - If there was an award for the most interesting man at the NFL Scouting Combine, it would be an absolute landslide in favor of former Florida State safety Myron Rolle. In fact, Rolle could probably give the Dos Equis guy a run for his money. Not that the rest of the players in Indy for the NFL's version of a job interview are boring, it's just that there aren't many 23-year-old's with Rolle's resume. Actually, there aren't many 43-year-olds with his resume.
Rolle went to Florida State with aspirations of becoming an NFL player ... and then a doctor after that. You know, that old story.
He earned freshman All-America honors in 2006, but that paled in comparison to how he was tearing through the classroom. Rolle would complete his undergraduate degree in just five semesters. After finishing up his career with the Seminoles, Rolle postponed the beginning of his NFL career. Instead, he spent a year earning a degree in medical anthropology from Oxford University (not too far from London, England) -- after being awarded one of America's 32 Rhodes Scholarships to the prestigious school. Oh, yeah, he's also created a program for Seminole Indian children to help educate them on the importance of physical fitness (it's called "Our Way To Health").
Now, he's back in the football mix at the combine, hoping teams believe he wants to play for at least a decade in the league before becoming a neurosurgeon -- and not just your run-of-the-mill neurosurgeon.
"When I'm done with football, which I hope is a decade or so or even 12 years, if the Lord allows that to happen," Rolle explained, "I want to go to medical school and practice to be a neurosurgeon. I read a book by Ben Carson, a doctor at Johns Hopkins who inspired me to want to go into neurosurgery, go to med school, practice medicine here in the United States and take my expertise to other parts of the world, in particular low- to middle-income countries and help build their infrastructure by understanding the people, the culture and the customs on the ground level.
"My degree at Oxford is medical anthropology. It allows me to understand the social and cultural aspects of medicine. I definitely want to be a doctor who's effective using the Westernized medicine that I learn here in the States and applying it to other parts of the world and being effective and being embraced by the culture, not being an outsider treating people, really being one of the population of the culture and the community. That'd be fascinating."
Due to the lofty goals for life after football, Rolle, who is of Bahamian descent, is trying to convince NFL teams he really does want to play for the next decade -- and won't simply jump ship to pursue his other dreams just yet.
"I can demonstrate to them my commitment and love for football by my actions and how I proceed in the next few months or so," Rolle said. "I hope I'm able to convey that message with authenticity, because really down deep in my heart, football is a part of who I am."
Rolle was also asked at the combine to touch upon the accusations levied by a coach of the Buccaneers, who suggested Rolle deserted his Florida State team. The amiable Rolle appeared to be perfectly fine with the question, explaining that it's a fair question for the teams, and that during his Rhodes' Scholarship process, he was pushed similarly in questioning. He seemed to enjoy the challenge and was happy to explain his side. When asked if the Bucs had apologized to him, Rolle was very straight forward.
"They don't owe me an apology," he said, point blank.
We know that in 2008 -- as a junior -- he was a third-team All-American, garnering 62 tackles. He has great size and strength.
"I would say I'm accountable, I'm intelligent, a very good tackler, athletic and someone who is aggressive, too," he explained when asked to describe himself as a player, "[Someone] who wants to come and meet the point of contact, who can be in the box, can be back in the deep third, [like] I had a chance to do at the Senior Bowl."
A year removed from football, Rolle is projected by most to be picked on the last day of the draft. There are some out there already questioning why he's bothering to pursue the NFL, as opposed to just getting into medicine and using his brain instead of putting himself at risk. After all, many safeties suffer hand injuries -- which would seriously jeopardize Rolle's future as a surgeon.
"We'll worry about my dexterity once my football career is over," Rolle said, contending that he doesn't think about injury when playing football.
And that's his right. No one should be preaching to this impressive young man and telling him what he should be doing. Instead of living one dream, Rolle appears poised to live two. Thus, he's the type of human being that should be celebrated and supported -- not questioned.