Former Penn State lineman John Urschel might be smartest player in NFL
Believe it or not, NFL players go back to school all the time.
Some pick up their final credits in the offseason. Others wait until their playing days are over.
But very few — if any — have attempted what John Urschel is.
The former Penn State and current Baltimore Ravens offensive lineman announced on Tuesday that he’s enrolling in the Massachusetts of Technology (yeah, that’s MIT) to pursue is PhD in math:
Starting my PhD in math at MIT this offseason!!! pic.twitter.com/vjcSctVx9i
— John Urschel (@JohnCUrschel) January 26, 2016
But saying he’ll be pursuing a PhD in “math” doesn’t do Urschel’s attempt justice. He’ll take classes in spectral graph theory, numerical linear algebra and machine learning.
Whatever those are.
While it might come as a surprise that an NFL offensive lineman is enrolling in arguably the most highly regarded academic institution in the country, it aligns with Urschel’s past.
A self-proclaimed “professional mathlete,” Urschel graduated from Penn State with a 4.0 GPA and he picked up his master’s degree while he played his final games in Happy Valley. He co-authored a paper that published in Journal of Computational Mathematics.
And just for good measure, he was a three-year captain on the Penn State track and field team as a thrower.
The former All-B1G lineman also is making a name for himself on the field. He started in seven games for the Ravens this year after being drafted in the fifth round of the 2014 draft.
Just in case the football thing doesn’t work out, it’s safe to say Urschel has a backup plan.