Derrick Coleman's name has been popping up in news outlets this past few days. Many people found it intriguing that he is a Deaf player playing fullback for the Seattle Seahawks in the National Football League. He wears number 40 and blocks for Marshawn Lynch, Seahawks' Running Back.
Coleman became legally deaf at age 3 and he played for UCLA as a tailback. During his four years at UCLA, he rushed for 1,700 yards with 19 touchdowns. In 2012, he went undrafted in the NFL draft. While he was a free agent, the Minnesota Vikings picked him up but was unable to make the cut on their 53-man roster. Seahawks picked him up afterwards and was named a starting fullback after an impressive training camp.
He was able to read lips well during practices and games, did not let his deafness get in the way of achieving his dream to play in the NFL.
* While Coleman received his new found fame -- did everyone also know that the huddle was invented by Paul Hubbard (Deaf) back in 1894 at Gallaudet University? It was originally used as a way to hide hand signals to prevent opposing team to see what play they planned on doing next. In 1896, other schools most notably University of Georgia adopted the huddle and it became a tradition in today's game.