First Bajan NFL Champ

TORONTO, Feb. 1, 2013 /CNW/ – One would not think that a tiny island 14 miles wide by 21 miles long formed by the collision of the Atlantic crystal and Caribbean plates would offer more than just sun, sea and sand, but Barbados, the eastern-most island in the Caribbean, continues to make quite a splash. Barbados has brought the world musical superstars like Rihanna, Shontelle, Hal Linton; dishes such as flying fish & cou cou; the first Zagat guide to the Caribbean; was the only place visited outside of the U.S. by President George Washington; is home to one of the oldest synagogues in the Western Hemisphere and has played host to world-class events and festivals. Adding to its already impressive roster, the island nation proudly congratulates Ramon Harewood of the Baltimore Ravens, the first ever NFL player to come from the island of Barbados and to make it to the Super Bowl.

“It is with extreme pride that I step onto the field for Super Bowl XLVII representing God, my family, the Baltimore Ravens and my native country of Barbados,” said Ramon Harewood, offensive lineman for the Baltimore Ravens. “The strong academic foundation and diverse athletic training I received growing up in Barbados has enabled me to achieve success on many levels as an adult.

Harewood, a mere 7-year veteran of the sport, is an All-American from Morehouse College in Atlanta, Georgia. Recruited on full academic scholarship, with hopes of becoming an engineer, Harewood joined the Morehouse team. Prior to his transfer, from the University of the West Indies, watching American football on TV was the only exposure Harewood had to the sport. A frequent runner, volleyball, cricket and rugby player, Harewood is a natural born athlete. Combining his innate athleticism with his 6-foot-6 ½-inch, 341-pound build, Harewood’s football potential could not be ignored by Michael Grant, assistant coach of the Morehouse College football team. Harewood learned the game by watching from the sidelines. He played just two games on defense in the 2006 season, moved to offense in 2007 and less than three years later he achieved All-American honors which ultimately led to his 2010 NFL draft pick and athletic sponsorship with Nike.

Following the Super Bowl, Harewood and famed teammates Michael Oher, Ray Rice, Torrey Smith, Anquan Boldin and Ladarius Webb plan to head back to his homeland of Barbados to lead a football training camp for children this Spring, sponsored by The Barbados Tourism Authority. According to Harewood, “It is very important for me to be seen as a positive role model for all Bajan youth and I am thrilled for the opportunity to host my first annual football camp on the island I call home.”

In conjunction with Sports Development Institute (SDI), a division of G3 Sports Marketing, LLC, the company strives to provide youth and teens exciting opportunities for growth and development physically, socially, mentally and emotionally while improving their leadership and communication skills.

“All Barbadians are thrilled that Ramon Harewood will be representing his home town of Barbados in Super Bowl XLVII this coming weekend,” said Cheryl Carter, Senior Business Development Manager of the Barbados Tourism Authority Canada, when she heard of Ramon’s Super Bowl trip. “Ramon’s success and achievements coupled with his proud heritage continue to inspire Barbadians across the globe. We wish him and the Baltimore Ravens the best of luck in the game on Sunday!”

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