I Beat the Odds: From Homelessness, to The Blind Side, and Beyond
The football star made famous in the hit film (and book) The Blind Side reflects on how far he has come from the circumstances of his youth. Michael Oher shares his personal account of his story, in this inspirational New York Times bestseller.
Looking back on how he went from being a homeless child in Memphis to playing in the NFL, Michael talks about the goals he had to break out of the cycle of poverty, addiction, and hopelessness that trapped his family. Eventually he grasped onto football as his ticket out and worked hard to make his dream into a reality. With his adoptive family, the Touhys, and other influential people in mind, he describes the absolute necessity of seeking out positive role models and good friends who share the same values to achieve one's dreams. Sharing untold stories of heartache, determination, courage, and love, I Beat the Odds is an incredibly rousing tale of one young man's quest to achieve the American dream.
wanted to look sloppy, so I did laundry regularly and ironed out every last wrinkle. That was one thing I had noticed: The people at Briarcrest always looked neat. If I was going to be a part of their world, I was going to make sure I was neat, too. Over the past few years, I had used my money from selling newspapers to buy myself clothes and I had enough that still fit me, so I just did my best to take care of what I owned and prayed that they wouldn’t wear out before I outgrew them. In the
taken me away from my mother, or kept me from her and made me cut all ties. I was nervous about those visits to see my mother at first. Sean and Leigh Anne didn’t push me to tell them why, but it was the same fear I’d had ever since I started living with Tony. I felt like I was fighting for every inch of distance I got between me and the old neighborhood and the thought of going back seemed like it was dangerous because it might pull me back into old habits, old friendships, and old ways of
Theismann’s career-ending injury when he was sacked by Lawrence Taylor in 1985 changed the nature of football. This led a lot of coaches to see the importance of the left tackle to protect right-handed quarterbacks (and right tackle for lefties). Basically, they need someone strong to protect their blind side, since they can’t see how or when they are being charged. The position grew to be much more heavily scrutinized, trained for, and highly paid than before—and it could all be traced back to
out of your paycheck, too. I have people hitting me up for money all the time. Sometimes they are people I don’t know—a lot of inventors who want someone to invest in their product; a lot of wannabe rappers who want someone to pay for them to put out a record. Those are usually pretty easy to say no to. Sometimes the requests come from people I do know—people from back home in the old neighborhood who think I owe them; members of my father’s family who I’ve never spoken two words to before.
us, or that she was physically abusive. It was just that sometimes she seemed to forget that she had children and that we needed her care, so she’d go off for a while and we kids would be left to take care of ourselves and one another. Since we didn’t know any other way of life, we just adjusted to it the best way we could and always tried to back up one another. And we weren’t the only kids in the neighborhood who lived like that. It probably shouldn’t make me feel better that there were other