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South Lakes Alum Learns NFL Coaching at Chicago Bears Training Camp

Ola Adams, a 2004 South Lakes graduate, was awarded a fellowship to study NFL coaching at the Chicago Bears training camp.

Ola Adams, a member of the South Lakes Class of 2004, spent three weeks at Chicago Bears training camp. (Patch File Photo)
Ola Adams, a member of the South Lakes Class of 2004, spent three weeks at Chicago Bears training camp. (Patch File Photo)
When the Indianapolis Colts and Chicago Bears met in Super Bowl XLI in 2006, the match was notable for many reasons. Both coaches, the Colts' Tony Dungy and the Bears' Lovie Smith, were the first African-American NFL head coaches to bring their teams to the Super Bowl. 

The Colts' 29-17 victory earned Dungy a place in history as the first African-American Super Bowl-winning coach, and was joined on that pedestal two years later by the Steelers' Mike Tomlin. 

South Lakes alumni and current SUNY Cortland Red Dragons Defensive Coordinator Ola Adams spent last summer working on ways to possibly follow Dungy and Tomlin. 

The former Seahawks defensive back and member of the  Class of 2004 spent three weeks at the Chicago Bears training camp, according to VA Uncovered.

He was only five people awarded a Bill Walsh Minority Coaching Fellowship last summer, a program designed to help minority coaches get full time jobs in the NFL. 

"Being with the bears was tremendous opportunity getting to work with class group of coaches and great organization, and a great group of players," Adams told Binghamton Time Warner News. "Definitely learned a lot out there that I can take back to Cortland, I feel like I gained about two years of experience."

Adams told Patch in 2012 that Tomlin is one the the biggest inspirations of his life. The two man have their similarities. 

Tomlin, at age 32 was the youngest coach to win the Super Bowl in 2009. When he was hired at SUNY Cortland in 2011, Adams was, at 25, the youngest active coordinator and assistant coach in college football. 

Adams, who lettered in track, football and basketball while attending South Lakes, helped coach the Red Dragons to a 6-5 record this season. 


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Connie Hartke January 11, 2014 at 07:32 AM
Good news!! All the best to Mr. Adams as his career progresses.

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