Myron Rolle, star defensive back at Florida State University, has chosen a Rhodes Scholarship studying medical anthropology over the immediate riches of an NFL career. Rolle completed his pre-med undergraduate degree in 2 1/2 years and is considered a top prospect at strong safety by NFL scouts.
Unlike most student-athletes, where the emphasis is on “athlete” rather than “student,” Rolle found as much satisfaction in the classroom and lab as on the football field. Tim Logan, a biochemistry professor at Florida State, recognized Rolle’s talents and offered him a chance to conduct research on metabolic characteristics of human mesenchymal stem cells. For this work, Rolle received Florida State’s 2008 Undergraduate Research and Creative Activity Award.
Getting the Rhodes Scholarship turned out to be a minor adventure as well. The interviews for Rhodes finalists were scheduled for Saturday 22 November, in Birmingham, Alabama, the same day as Florida State’s game at the University of Maryland. Rolle went to Birmingham for the interviews–then, with the help of a police escort and a private airplane, flew to College Park, Maryland (outside Washington, DC) in time to play the second half of the game, where Florida State trounced Maryland 37-3.
After completing his master’s degree at Oxford, Rolle intends to enter the 2010 NFL draft. He also plans to go to medical school. There’s no word whether Oxford intends to recruit Rolle for its rugby side.