For one Glendale family, sports is the gift that keeps on giving.
Prince Amukamara left Apollo High School to pursue a college football career at Nebraska, where he was converted from a running back to one of the game’s best cornerbacks. He was just selected by the New York Giants with the 19th pick in this week’s NFL Draft.
Just eight months ago, in late September, his little sister took the first step of her college sports career by committing to play basketball for Arizona State University.
Promise Amukamara, a 5’8″ guard who averaged 22 points a game this year at Apollo HS, was evidently blessed with the same athletic genes as her brother. She was selected as the 2010-11 Gatorade Arizona Girls Basketball Player of the Year, the first from the Glendale school to be awarded that honor.
Her brother didn’t get selected by the hometown Arizona Cardinals, but Promise will get to watch him play when the Giants come to Phoenix for an Oct. 2 game.
Prince was an explosive running back at Apollo and capped his high school career in 2006 by being named the Arizona Republic Big Schools Football Player of the Year. He went out on a huge game, rushing for 366 yards in a state playoff game.
At Nebraska, he put his speed and athleticism to work at cornerback and won a Big 12 Defensive Player of the Year award.
Promise is just getting started on her road through college sports. But her high school achievements earned her a scholarship from ASU to help pave the road.
She led Apollo to a 25-5 record and the 4A-I state championship. In addition to her scoring, she contributed 11 rebounds a game, as well as seven assists and five steals.
At ASU, she’ll also bring some serious speed to the floor. She was also a star track athlete at Apollo, running the 100m and 200m sprints.
And then there’s little sister, Peace Amukamara. She’s the next athlete in the family line-up to be moving up to college. The 5’7″ guard will be a senior next year on the Apollo basketball team.
Peace doesn’t put up the impressive scoring numbers that her sister did the last couple of years. But without Promise on the floor with her next year, it might become her time to step out of the shadow.
After all, it’s in the family genes.