There may not be many APIs that play college basketball, let alone in the NBA, but when it comes to football, Pacific Islanders – specifically – American Samoans – are a powerhouse. According to this past Sunday’s story on 60 Minutes, there are more NFL players that come from American Samoa (a groups of islands located in the South Pacific) than any other place in America; there are currently more than thirty Samoans in the NFL with another 200-plus playing Division I college football. And get this – the total population of American Samoa is around 65,000! You could fit the whole population of American Samoa in an average NFL stadium.
American Samoans on average are physically big, but have a certain speed and agility not normally found in others of similar size. However, besides the strong work ethic and discipline, I didn’t quite understand what made American Samoans such natural football players. Or maybe because that 80% of the U.S. territory’s economy is based on canning, one of the only real ways to get a decent education is for those to excel in football.