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Running Back Ameer Abdullah’s Speech Garners Praise


ameerNebraska running back Ameer Abdullah delivered the  Big 10 Football Kickoff Luncheon which is earning widespread praise for both its style and substance. Abdullah’s speech was titled “The Essence of a Student-Athlete”.

“The true essence of a student-athlete is someone who has the desire to educate themselves athletically, academically and personally,” Abdullah said. He himself scores high on all these measures.

Abdullah mentioned the long-term economic advantages of a college degree, citing a study which state a college graduate will make about $1 million more than a high school graduate over the course of a lifetime. “That’s like saying you can win the lottery by just going to class and doing your work,” Abdullah said.

The ninth of nine children born into a Muslim home in the Birmingham, Ala., suburb of Homewood, Ameer also will be the ninth Abdullah to graduate from college. Several of his siblings have advanced degrees as well. There are two lawyers, a CNN producer, a branch manager of a bank and several business people among the Abdullah’s three boys and six girls.

He also mentioned about the tense days after September 11, 2001 when his father counseled his children how to respond when lot of questions were being raised about their faith.

“From this point on, there’s going to be a lot of ignorance, a lot of misinformed opinions,” Ameer recalled him saying. “They told me to encourage others to make informed decisions. … Before you judge something, really do thorough research for your own knowledge. If you still don’t like it, fine, but don’t just watch Fox News.”

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