Shawn Oakman's second chance after not-guilty ruling
It has been confirmed that former standout Baylor Bear defensive end and viral meme sensation, Shawn Oakman, will be playing for the Los Angeles Wildcats XFL team.
After rape allegations surfaced in April of 2016, Oakman slid off draft boards. Since then, Oakman has fought for the last three years to prove his innocence, and on
February 28, 2019, Oakman was found not guilty.
Oakman, now 27, has been removed from the game of football for almost four years. His dreams
of playing football ever again seemed unlikely. NFL scouts have said he is so far removed from
the game that his chances of making a CFL team were slim.
Being drafted in the XFL is not the same as being drafted in the NFL. However, this can
hopefully make up for the lost time fighting to stay out of prison. In the future, this may be
an opportunity to compete and possibly earn a spot on an NFL roster in 2020.
When I saw the Wildcats' tweet, I was ecstatic. Oakman was an electrifying pass-rusher at Baylor, holding their single-season sack record (11 in 2014).
During his time at Baylor, he was a monster. He had an explosive first step, was excellent at shedding blocks, and always seemed to be in every play. One scouting report from 2016 said, "here you see what coaches and scouts will fall in love with during the predraft process. A man that size should not be able to move that quick, that fast and that smoothly around the edges."
Before the charges came about, I could not wait to see where he would go in the 2016 draft. Three years later, I hope that one day Oakman somehow makes his way to the NFL to fulfill his lifelong dream.
If Oakman could somehow get to what he could have been, then I can not wait to watch
ESPN and hear, "What if I told you..."