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michael89156

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: May 03, 2013, 12:02:23 AM



DE Gholston looks to make name for self


 By Ira Kaufman | Tribune Staff , Roy Cummings | Tribune Staff

 Published: May 2, 2013

 
TAMPA -

 William Gholston has a message for anyone who will listen:
 
Im not Vernon.
 
Gholstons cousin, Vernon, was a standout player at Ohio State, posting 21.5 sacks and 30.5 tackles for losses. Vernon was equally impressive in the weight room and he was selected by the Jets with the sixth overall pick in the 2008 draft.
 
Three years later, he was released without registering a single NFL sack. Vernon went on to play for the Bears and Rams and he is now considered one of the biggest draft busts in recent NFL history.
 
When I was in high school, I looked up to him so much, DE William Gholston said Thursday as Tampa Bays fourth-round draft choice arrived for rookie camp. He was a monster in college.
 
William Gholston, who registered 10 sacks and 30 tackles for losses in his three years at Michigan State, was asked whether he felt some NFL clubs bypassed him in the draft because of his last name.
 
I dont believe so, he said. I can only control what I can control. We both do have the same last name, but William and Vernon are two completely different players and two completely different people. Theres only one way to show it.

 
Show time

Fifth-round pick Steve Means described his pre-game routine at Buffalo, where the 250-pound defensive end finished with 18.5 sacks and 29.5 tackles for loss.
 
Once my helmet gets strapped on, Im ready to go, he said. Before that, I listen to rap music, some hard-core stuff Lil Wayne and old DMX.
 
The Bucs are intrigued with Means as a pass rusher coming off the edge. Asked to describe what its like to sack a quarterback, Means couldnt contain a wide grin.
 
That might be the greatest feeling in the world, he said. Its being able to get my job done and it shows a strong sense of fighting through adversity. I faced double-teams on almost every play.
 





Bucs rookie Gholston finds new home

Rick Stroud, Times Staff Writer 
 

Thursday, May 2, 2013
 




TAMPA

At 6 feet 7, 278 pounds, the only thing bigger than William Gholston is his potential.
 
His nickname in high school was "Too Tall" because that's what coaches told him he was when he came out for football, insisting on playing linebacker.
 
But wherever Gholston, the Bucs' fourth-round pick last week, has lined up, he has felt more at home on the football field than anywhere else.
 
"Football has been the most consistent thing in my life," he said.
 
That's because growing up in Detroit, Gholston lived in more homes than he can remember. At 14, he had some issues with his parents and moved out. He stayed with relatives, with coaches and, some nights, slept in a car.
 
Gholston didn't disclose what led to the separation from his parents, and they have since reconnected. "Heading down the wrong path," is how he described it.
 
Eventually, stability arrived when he moved in with the family of his high school coach, Vince Session. The one-time running back at Northern Illinois was dropping Gholston off at the home of a relative where he had been staying. But nobody came to the door, and Gholston didn't have a key.
 
At that point, Session had seen enough and ordered the house-hopping to stop. He moved Gholston in with him, his wife, Donna, and their two daughters.
 
Not only was Gholston saved from the streets, but by providing stability, he was able to tap into his potential as a football player.
 
"Adversity always shapes a man," Gholston, 21, said Thursday, shortly after he reported with the rest of the rookies to minicamp. "It shapes anyone. And going through the adverse situation I grew up in, it did fuel me sometimes on the field. Sometimes, it doesn't.

"But going through all that and having the right people around me to mold me into the man I am today, I'm just blessed. I'm extremely blessed to be here today."
 
At this point, Gholston's story sounds similar to that of Ravens offensive tackle Michael Oher, the inspiration for The Blind Side, a 2009 movie. The difference is Gholston had a place to live. He just chose not to stay with his immediate family.
 
"I wouldn't necessarily say it was tough at all because it's not like that," Gholston said. "I could go to my family's house. It's not like they just shunned me or I was out. It's just like it was more of a choice. Once I got stability, it was a whole lot easier to focus."
 
Gholston was switched from linebacker to defensive end at Michigan State and started the past two seasons. He knifed past blockers but found it difficult to shake the perception he was an underachiever.
 
There were two reasons for that.
 
One, he produced only 10 sacks over three seasons though he recorded 30 tackles-for-loss and defended 10 passes.
 
Two, his last name. Gholston is the cousin of former Jets linebacker Vernon Gholston, the sixth overall pick in 2008 out of Ohio State who had no sacks over his three-year career.
 
"We're not necessarily as close as everyone would believe. But I did follow him through high school," Gholston said of Vernon, who is five years older. "I looked up to him so much.
 
"We both do have the same last name. But I'm William Gholston. That's Vernon Gholston. Two completely different players, two completely different people. And there's only one way to show it."
 
Gholston smiles when he speaks. He looks interviewers in the eye. On the first weekend in May, he was like a thoroughbred being led into the gate, eager to get started.
 
"There's a lot more you can put into it yourself," he said. "Not having to go to classes. This is a job, and it's not even like a real job. I get to do what I love to do, and that's play football. I feel like I can only go up."
 
Bucs general manager Mark Dominik said the team spent a lot of time with Gholston and researched his past, convinced about his bright future.
 
"I felt Coach (Greg) Schiano and his style and his leadership is everything this kid needs. I think he can thrive here," Dominik said. "That's why I was excited to make the selection. Nervous but excited because I think this is a great home for him."
 
Finally.





 
Rick Stroud can be reached at stroud@tampabay.com and can from 6 to 9 a.m. weekdays on WDAE-620.

BucMyLife

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#1 : May 03, 2013, 12:26:22 AM

Love this pick.

The quest for .500 begins...

GoldsonAges

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#2 : May 03, 2013, 12:36:12 AM

I'm rooting for him.

Mike Glennon
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6\' 6\" 210
6\' 5\" 200
6\' 4\" 190 6\' 3\" 180 6\' 2\" 170 6\' 1\" 160  6\' 0\" 150 How does he compare to your favorite QB?

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#3 : May 03, 2013, 12:57:14 AM

Good read. I hope he takes advantage of the situation. And really turns into something.  Could be another 4th round hit like Mike Williams was.


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#4 : May 03, 2013, 01:15:11 AM

people can say his fall related to vernon, but the bigger reason is 10 sacks over 3 years- he should have had more than 10 sacks in his last season if he expects to compete in the nfl as a pass rusher.... good luck to him, but the production was not there.

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#5 : May 03, 2013, 01:49:23 AM

Looks like Dom and Schiano did their homework on these guys. The more I read about Banks and Gholston, it looks like they are excellent character guys.  I doubt they would of drafted the Honey Badger at ANY point in the draft.  And glad they didn't.


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#6 : May 03, 2013, 08:08:45 AM

Nice story.. I'm definitely pulling for this kid.

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#7 : May 03, 2013, 08:08:45 AM

people can say his fall related to vernon, but the bigger reason is 10 sacks over 3 years- he should have had more than 10 sacks in his last season if he expects to compete in the nfl as a pass rusher.... good luck to him, but the production was not there.

He does have half the sack total but an equal number of tackles for a loss.  I'll take that in the 4th.

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#8 : May 03, 2013, 08:31:16 AM

He is not Vernon. Vernon had a much more impressive college career.


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#9 : May 03, 2013, 10:45:13 AM

He is not Vernon. Vernon had a much more impressive college career.
and seems like a better athlete.

But that's why Vernon went in round 1 and William went in round 4.


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#10 : May 03, 2013, 11:13:05 AM

He is not Vernon. Vernon had a much more impressive college career.

Maybe William will have the more impressive pro career. It happens. Garrison Hearst had a better college career than Terrell Davis.

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#11 : May 03, 2013, 11:13:26 AM

He is not Vernon. Vernon had a much more impressive college career.
i think vernon is available.

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#12 : May 03, 2013, 11:29:09 AM

Looks like Dom and Schiano did their homework on these guys. The more I read about Banks and Gholston, it looks like they are excellent character guys.  I doubt they would of drafted the Honey Badger at ANY point in the draft.  And glad they didn't.

Agreed.

Naismith was right about Revis. Everyone else is a dummy.

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#13 : May 03, 2013, 12:47:38 PM

He is not Vernon. Vernon had a much more impressive college career.
And look at what that did for him. 0 career sacks.

So we didn't draft Chad Spann or whats his face. Get over it.


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#14 : May 03, 2013, 01:18:27 PM

Since when is Lil Wayne considered hard-core rap?

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