Jo-Siah Adu has made a bunch of great plays for the Cache football team but his claim to fame may actually be as a recruiter for the Bulldogs who host arch rival Elgin Friday in the Battle of the Wichitas.
Adu will be the biggest man on the field Friday and he is a force blocking for a variety of Cache backs.
Had it not been for Adu’s efforts, though, one of those backs – senior Christian Daniel — may not even have been playing the sport.
“I had always concentrated on basketball and track and just never came out for football,” Daniel said. “But after last season, Jo-Siah talked to me and encouraged me to play football.
“I’m glad I gave it a chance and I’m having fun.”
And, he’s been making some huge plays at slot back for the Bulldogs.
“He’s been running those jet sweeps for us and he’s made some really big runs,” head coach Faron Griffin said. “When Blake (Young) went down we were worried but he’s done a good job providing that threat with his speed.”
But while the compliments are nice, they are not what Daniel wants.
“I just want the team to have success; that is why I came out,” he said. “Making it to the playoffs is something we all want and we are all working hard to make it happen.”
While he hasn’t quite become the “Nigerian Nightmare,” the label once given to former Kansas City Chiefs back Christian Okoye, he does have the heritage, should he start running over people.
“Both of my parents came over from Nigeria and I was born here,” he said. “My mom is a (mental health) therapist and my dad was an engineer.”
Knowing his heritage better explains his favorite meal.
“It’s called fufu and it is a soup that comes from our Nigerian heritage,” Daniel said. “It’s really good and especially on cold nights like we’re having right now. My mom makes it and it’s my favorite food.”
According to the Internet, the traditional method requires the boiling of starchy food crops like yams or plantains and then pound them into a dough-like consistency.
Normally, fufu is eaten with the fingers and a small ball of it can be dipped into an accompanying soup or sauce.
Obviously, Daniel is a good student because he’s focused on a career in the health science industry and already has a couple of schools picked out.
“I’m not sure just what field I’m going to pursue but nurse practioner is one thing I’ve been looking at,” he said. “I would love to go to college in Missouri or North Carolina, but right now I’m not sure where I will end up.”
Could his plans change if he got a scholarship offer for football, basketball or even track, where he also is an asset to the Cache athletic program?
“I would probably think about it but right now I probably haven’t played football long enough to get looked at,” he said. “In basketball I have played everything from the 1 (point guard) to 4 (forward) but that also takes a lot of work to get seen by the right coach.”
Cache head coach Faron Griffin said Daniel is one of those players who he would have loved to have had for three years.
“I think he would have really been a good one had he come out earlier but we understand that kids sometimes don’t think they might be able to help,” he said. “But he’s done a great job stepping in and being a real threat for us on offense.”
While it won’t be visible from the outside Friday, you can rest assured that Daniel will have plenty of clothing on to protect him from the cold.
“I don’t like it, especially when it rains,” he said. “I wore long underwear and everything last week (against Weatherford) and I will be in the same clothes this week, I just hate the cold weather but this is part of football.”
And now he’s bought into the program and everyone in Cache can thank big No. 77 for making that happen.