Former Tiger Basketball player finds success on gridiron

By NEMCC Media Relations

BOONEVILLE – Former Northeast Mississippi Community College Tiger Emmanuel Ezejiofo of Jackson proved that no matter what sport it is, a Tiger can adapt to even the most foreign surroundings.

During the spring/summer of 2011, Ezejiofo took his talents across the Atlantic Ocean to the Colchester Gladiators of the British American Football Association.

Ezejiofo, a 6-4 forward, donned the Northeast black and gold during the 2009-10 basketball season for David Robbins’ Tigers and became a stat-generating machine for Northeast.

In his one season with the Tigers, Ezejiofo appeared in 23 games averaging 7.39 points per game but filled up the boxscore regularly.

Over the course of the 2009-10 season, Ezejiofo connected on 62-of-85 shots from the charity stripe (73 percent) and hit 44-percent of his shots from the floor (54-of-124).

Not only did Ezejiofo average 7.39 points a game, the Hillcrest Christian graduate also averaged 5.74 rebounds a game – pulling down nearly 100 defensive rebounds – and averaged two assists a game in his 23 contests to go along with 19 steals and 11 blocks.

After the 2009-10 season, Ezejiofo changed sports and was a member of the University of Southern Mississippi football team before taking his talents to Colchester, United Kingdom – 60 miles northeast of London.

While in the United Kingdom, Ezejiofo showed the kind of statistical domination that the Hillcrest Christian graduated demonstrated at Bonner Arnold Coliseum.

Ezejiofo appeared in the Colchester Gladiators first five games of the 2011 season and made an immediate impact on the United Kingdom club.

During his five games, Ezejiofo set numbers that still led the team at the end of the 10 game season.

On the offensive side of the ball, Ezejiofo hauled in 18 passes for 371 yards – 20.6 yards per catch – and accounted for three scores.

Ezejiofo’s catches, yards, average and scores all led the Gladiators and the former Tiger’s 82-yard scoring catch against the East Kent Mavericks propelled Colchester to its first win of the year.

Despite playing in just five games, Ezejiofo’s 18 catches accounted for 47.4-percent of the receptions by Gladiator receivers on the year.

While Ezejiofo was busy making his mark on the offensive side of the ball, the former Tiger was playing defense and was a special team’s return specialist for the Gladiators.

Ezejiofo had 10 returns in his five games with the Gladiators accounting for 149 yards and was second on the team to place kicker Casey Campbell who finished the year with over 300 return yards.

On the defensive side of the ball, Ezejiofo made his time count as well. While just recording three tackles for the Gladiators, Ezejiofo finished tied for second on the United Kingdom club in sacks when the former Tiger recorded a pair of quarterback sacks in the first five games.