VYPE Houston Region
VYPE U -- Nwosu; Hayden Stay Home and Star for Local Teams
July 12, 2012By Matt Malatesta of VYPE MAGAZINE - Central Houston
College: University of Houston
High School: Fort Bend Elkins
D.J. Hayden was a star at Fort Bend Elkins, but not heavily recruited coming out of his senior year. Hayden led Navarro Junior College to the 2010 NJCAA National Championship.
“I think the reason I had success early in my career is that I always try to be coachable,” Hayden said. “I listen to my coaches and what they have to say. They put me in great positions to make plays and I do with their help.”
After being signed by the University of Houston in 2011, Hayden has made a name for himself. He made 66 tackles in 2011, earning him the title of Conference USA Defensive Newcomer of the Year and a spot on the second-team all-Conference USA.
“The biggest difference between college and high school football is the speed of the game and the intelligence of the quarterbacks,” Hayden said.
Hayden is entering his second year with the Cougars and hopes to continue his success as they enter the Big East. He’s enjoying the perks of his success and moving up in the college football landscape.
“The coolest stadium I’ve played in would have to be the Superdome in New Orleans when we played Tulane,” Hayden. “The one cool person I have gotten to meet would have to be Houston Texan Andre Johnson.”
College: Rice University
High School: Klein Forest High School
Cam Nwosu made the most of his days at Klein Forest High School. Under coach Kenny Hammock, Nwosu ended his high school career with 113 tackles in his senior year alone, and over 300 in all three seasons he played for the Eagles. He was named to the second-team all state and Defensive Player of the Year in District 13-5A as well as team MVP as a senior.
Nwosu made his debut with the Rice Owls in 2011 as a starter against the University of Texas.
“The coolest stadium I played in was my first career start last year at Darrell K. Royal,” Nwosu said. “The atmosphere and amount of fans there was a tremendous experience to witness.”
During his first season, Nwosu landed 108 tackles, making him the first Rice linebacker to make over 100 tackles since Brian Raines. His biggest plays included 16 stops in the game against Marshall and a 12-tackle total in his debut.
“I would credit most of my success to my own criticism,” Nwosu said. “I have been a perfectionist in everything I do, along with being my own worst critic. Most importantly though, I’m my own biggest fan. I also focus on keeping God and the people that mean the most to me close at all times.
“The biggest difference in college versus high school football is the competition level, but that is a given for most athletes,” he said. “You have to have the mindset of doing the little things right, day in and day out.”