Born and raised in Tulsa, Oklahoma, Shamiel Gary lived his dream as a professional football player in the National Football League, but the road to the NFL wasn’t easy. Shamiel faced obstacles from every direction. It took hard work and perseverance to bring his 3rd-grade dream to life.
As a senior at Booker T. Washington High School, Shamiel had coaches who didn’t believe in him. After the state championship, he received his only football scholarship from the University of Wyoming. During his freshman season at Wyoming, he won the 5A State Championship and earned Freshman All-American.
At the end of his sophomore season, Shamiel transferred to Oklahoma State University to be closer to his family while his grandmother battled Alzheimer’s disease. In a single season, he went from being an All-American Safety to spending the 2011 season on the sidelines due to NCAA transfer rules.
In 2012, Shamiel hit the football field in full force. He started every game for the Cowboys, recording 72 tackles, 6 passes defended, 3 interceptions, and 1 forced fumble. As a senior, his pace continued, and the Cowboys placed 2nd in the Big 12 Conference.
After graduation in 2014, Shamiel entered the NFL as an undrafted free agent, signing with the New England Patriots. After separating his shoulder during the 2015 NFL pre-season with the Miami Dolphins, he was released on an injury settlement. He then found out his mother’s cancer had returned. It was this release, this moment filled with uncertainty, that just so happened to be God’s perfect timing. If Shamiel had not injured his shoulder, he would have still been in Miami. Instead, he got to spend every day and night in the hospital with his mother until she was able to get a second surgery.
Soon after this, Shamiel returned to Miami, Florida. For the first time in his life, his mother was able to watch her son play in an NFL game. After the season ended, Shamiel found himself in the same situation as before. He was again able to be with his mother, this time being her last days. Shamiel finished his football career with the Buffalo Bills.
Currently, Shamiel is pouring into the next generation through professional speaking and mentoring. He loves reading books and soaking up time at the bowling alley.