Football Star/Rhodes Scholar Myron Rolle

NEWSWEEK: You graduated pre-med in two and a half years, you ' re a potential first-round NFL draft pick, you spent the summer researching cancer and now you ' re a Rhodes Scholar. How do you deal with all the people who must be as bitterly jealous of your success as I am?
Myron Rolle:
Well, I'm flattered. I think I've worked hard for everything that's happened but I know I've had a lot of support from family, friends, and even at Florida State. My coaches and teammates have supported me in everything I've wanted to accomplish. It's definitely a blessing.

Tell me about Saturday. Did you think twice about going to the interview when you knew it might mean missing the game?
Absolutely not. I was just hoping that our game was going to be pushed back later into the evening, so that I could at least make half of it, and everything worked out in my favor. The NCAA approved a charter jet for me to go from Alabama to Maryland. It was a pretty remarkable day, I'm not gonna lie. It was great.

Who got the first phone call after you won the Rhodes?
My mother. She was screaming for about two minutesI couldn't get a word out. "Ahhhhhh!" I was like, "Mummy, I gotta tell you the rest," but she didn't want to hear it.

What was that plane ride over to the game like?
First I was still excited and elated about winning the Rhodes scholarship. That was an amazing feat. But then I put my iPod on and started listening to my pre-game music and started to switch my mind to football and was just hoping that the jet would land as quickly as possible so that I could get on the field and help my teammates win the game.

What kind of music do you listen to to get in the zone?
I listen to some rap music. I'm from the Bahamas so I like reggae as well. And then I slow it down with a little Frank Sinatra. But on this particular day, since the day was so good, I listened to the song by Ice Cube, "It Was a Good Day." That's what I listened to on the plane. I must have repeated that about five times.

So which is it next year, the NFL or Oxford?
After the season is done, that's when my family and I will sit down and make the decision.

What would you be studying if you did decide to go?
I would read for medical anthropology, it's a one-year degree looking at the social and cultural aspects of medicine in different parts of the world. It's a good precursor to medical school, which is a goal of mine.

Would you be able to play American football in England?
I was talking to a guy named Dr. Chris Howard who played football at Air Force and was a Rhodes scholar back in the day, and he was talking about how Pete Dawkins from Army played rugby over there. I'm not sure I want to play rugby but I think I'll train and do some athletics so I stay in shape and keep my skills and my athleticism.

If go into the NFL, is there a particular team you ' re hoping to play for?
I'd love to play for the Philadelphia Eagles. I'm a South Jersey kid, and I was very excited when the Phillies won the World Series, and I'd like to stay home.