Micheal Oher's Story

The Blind side

Synopsis

Michael Oher was born on May 28, 1986, in Memphis, Tennessee. He came from a broken home and his estranged father was murdered while Oher was in high school. Sean and Leigh Anne Tuohy became Oher's legal guardians and he developed into a college football star and a top NFL draft pick. Oher's story was told in Michael Lewis's book The Blind Side and the Sandra Bullock film of the same name.

Early Life

Football star Michael Oher was born Michael Jerome Williams Jr. on May 28, 1986, in Memphis, Tennessee. He was one of 12 children born to Michael Jerome Williams Sr. and Denise Oher, who provided their children with little to no support. Michael Sr. was frequently in prison, and Denise was addicted to crack cocaine. As a result, Michael Jr. was in-and-out of foster homes and frequently homeless. He also performed poorly as a student, repeating first grade and second grade and attending 11 different schools during his first nine years as a student. Oher's estranged father, was murdered while Oher was a senior in high school.

Leigh Anne Tuohy

She was born in Memphis Tennessee, the daughter of Virginia and Stanley Roberts, a U.S. air marshal. She has one brother, Stanford Roberts. Growing up she was close to her maternal grandmother, Virginia "Virgie" (Collins) Cummings, who lived with her family. She graduated from Briacrest Christain school in Memphis Tennessee. In the early 1980s, she graduated from University of Mississippi, where she became a member of Kappa Delta Sorority, cheerleader,and also met her future husband, Sean Tuohy, a basketball player for the Ole Miss Rebels.

Sean Tuohy

Tuohy was raised Roman Catholic. Tuohy is the son of Mida (Michell) and Edward "Skeets" Tuohy, a basketball coach at the prestigious Isidore Newman School, in New Orleans, Louisiana, where the Tuohy Gymnasium is named in his honor. Tuohy graduated from Newman. Out of high school, Tuohy was drafted by the Cincinnati Reds to play baseball, but turned down the offer to attend college. With sports as his “meal ticket” through high school and college, Tuohy left New Orleans for the University of Mississippi on a basketball scholarship.

Turning Point

The young boy was finally taken in by Sean and Leigh Anne Tuohy when he was 16, and the Tuohys became Oher's legal guardians when he was 17. In his junior year, Oher began to excel in football. By the beginning of his senior year, Oher was the starting left tackle on the varsity football team. He quickly became a top football prospect in the state of Tennessee, which led to multiple scholarship offers from Division 1 schools.
Michael Oher - Mini Biography

Success on the Football Field

Oher experienced great success in 2004. A well-known football player, he received first team All-America honors from USA Today and was given the opportunity to play in the U.S. Army All-America Bowl. He also accepted a scholarship offer from the University of Mississippi after receiving offers from Tennessee, LSU, Alabama and NC State, among others. As a freshman offensive lineman, Michael Oher played 11 games for the University of Mississippi, starting 10 of them at the right guard position. Oher was selected first team Freshman All-America by The Sporting News and first team Freshman All-SEC for his play in 2005.

In his sophomore season in 2006, Michael Oher became a breakout star in the highly-competitive SEC after a move to his more natural position at left tackle. Oher earned second team All-SEC for his performance. That same year, the author Michael Lewis released a book titled The Blind Side, which detailed Michael Oher's life from foster child to college football star. The book was turned into a movie in 2009, and starred Sandra Bullock. The movie has been nominated for an Oscar for Best Motion Picture of the Year.

Michael Oher continued to dominate at the left tackle position in his junior year. After being selected as a consensus first team All-SEC in 2007, Oher declared for the 2008 NFL Draft. After just two days, he rescinded his declaration for the NFL Draft to return for his senior season at University of Mississippi. Oher was one of the senior leaders on a University of Mississippi team that recorded its first winning record since 2003. The dominant left tackle was once again a consensus first team All-SEC, as well as a first team All-America selection by The Associated Press.