BTN.com staff, October 2, 2015
BTN's "Big Ten Football Pregame Show" documents the amazing story of Michigan wide receiver Amara Darboh, who was born in Sierra Leone, Africa, just as that country's civil war was escalating. Watch a small clip here, then tune in for the entire feature in our pregame coverage starting at 10:30 a.m. ET.
We will also post the feature on BTN.com after it airs.
In the first five years of Darboh's life, more than 35,000 people were killed in that civil war, including Darhoh's parents. A group of Darboh's relatives escaped with the boy traveling on foot to Gambia and Senegal before getting the chance to move to the U.S. in 2001. He ended up in Des Moines, Iowa, where a Christian group sponsored Darboh's remaining family putting them in a home.
Darboh was just seven years old then, but his athletic ability quickly caught the attention of area sports coaches, and he earned a scholarship at eight years old to play Little League baseball. On that team he met a boy named Max Schaefer, and their friendship grew into a brotherhood. Max's father Dan Schaefer coached most of their childhood sports teams, and Darboh moved in with the Schaefer family the year before sixth grade.
He was legally adopted by the Schaefer family when he was 17 years old. His African relatives in America knew that the Schaefer's could give Darboh the opportunities he needed and deserved to help him take full advantage of his talents. In fact, Darboh's older sister was one who asked the Shaefers to adopt Darboh.
Darboh does not want to be thought of as a refugee but instead a talent and an athlete. He takes advantage of every opportunity and always remembers his roots. That drive combined with his surrounding support system, he has a very bright future ahead of him.
And here's that amazing Darboh catch again.[youtube https://youtu.be/a2R_jsR9FRw]