Thursday, November 26, 2009

Polamalu's Cousin Following In His Footsteps

There are few players more recognizable in the NFL than Troy Polamalu with his hits, his hands and of course, his hair.

He's become an icon in Western Pennsylvania in just seven short years with the Pittsburgh Steelers.

However, in the eastern part of the state, there's another Polamalu who is turning heads as well.

Maika Polamalu is a junior at Pottsgrove High School, which is northwest of Philadelphia.

He is being recruited by area schools such as Pitt and Penn State, all of whom would love to have a Polamalu on their team.

"It's awesome. It is a younger generation of cousins that are starting to come up, so him along with a few other cousins, it's gonna be pretty cool to watch," Troy Polamalu said.

"Maika is the kind of kid that comes from a great family of football. His dad was a great athlete at Penn State, his uncle was a great athlete at USC and is now a running back coach with Jaguars," Rick Pennypacker said.

Now Maika, a running back and linebacker, appears to be the next leaf on the family tree to excel in football.

"I've been working with my dad since seventh, eighth grade. I've just been coming out here running my miles, getting my workouts in daily, just doing what I think I have to do," Maika Polamalu said.

While success on the field has been easy for Maika, off the field, it's a little harder due to the standard set by the Polamalu in Pittsburgh.

"I try telling Maika he's not Troy Polamalu, he's Maika Polamalu. The name is always gonna follow him. I think he's greatest player in the NFL and I don't know if Maika will ever live up to that, but everyone expects him to," Pennypacker said.

One possibility is that should Maika make it to the NFL, that he would get to play with Troy.

"That would be awesome. I don't know if I can last that long though," Troy Polamalu said.

"That'd be amazing. If he's still in there and I make it that far, it'd be an honor," Maika Polamalu said.

Unfortunately, Troy has never been able to make it out to Pottstown to see Maika play.

However, that hasn't stopped him from letting his biased opinion be known that Maika should play college football at the University of Southern California.

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