Leading up to the NBA draft, former Harvard forward Kyle Casey ’13-’14 has drawn attention from pro teams.
Harvard’s influence in the NFL expanded over the weekend as four graduating members of the Crimson, defensive tackle Nnamdi Obukwelu, longsnapper Tyler Ott, tight end Cam Brate, and defensive back Brian Owusu, signed with NFL teams after going undrafted in the seven-round NFL Draft.
Obukwelu, who recorded 109 tackles and nine sacks over his Harvard career, signed with the Indianapolis Colts Sunday. Ott will not go nearly as far to live his NFL dreams, agreeing to a deal with the nearby New England Patriots. Brate, meanwhile, will return to his Midwestern roots, joining a Minnesota Vikings organization that also includes former Crimson lineman Kevin Murphy.
Lastly, Owusu will return to San Diego, where he had five tackles in a 42-20 win over the University of San Diego Toreros to start the 2013 season. This time, Owusu will be suiting up in Chargers blue and gold.
Princeton defensive tackle Caraun Reid was the only Ivy League player taken in the NFL Draft this year, going in the fifth round, 158th overall to the Detroit Lions. Cornell quarterback Jeff Mathews signed with the Atlanta Falcons after going undrafted.
With the seasons winding down for most of the spring sports, let’s take a look at some former athletes—some Harvard alumni—that have left their mark on the university recently.
Olympic Excellence: Angela Ruggiero ’02-04
A little over two months ago, Ruggiero—perhaps one of the most accomplished US women’s ice hockey stars in recent memory—came to speak at the Harvard Innovation Lab as a part of the tech company MC10’s sports advisory board.
The four-time US Olympian focused on key issues concerning the intersection of technology and sports, notably commenting, “At some point in time, your natural abilities aren’t going to be enough. I think at that point in time...you actually decide as an athlete that you want to get even better.”
A baseball player injured in last year’s bombings who returned to raise money for the Gillian Reny Stepping Strong Fund. A men’s lightweight crew coach who ran all 26.2 miles while undergoing chemotherapy. An 18-year-old sailor who was the youngest runner in the field. An assistant hockey coach who was given a bib to raise money for Parkinson’s disease. An assistant baseball coach who finished with a qualifying time and made his team’s Beanpot game against UMass immediately after. This handful of Harvard athletes and coaches all had one thing in common: they left their primary sports on Monday to participate in the 2014 Boston Marathon.
While admitted students were exploring the campus for Visitas, this past weekend also served as a fall preview for the Harvard football team. On Saturday night, the Crimson took the field at Harvard Stadium in organized fashion for the first time since November to play its annual Spring Game.