Super Bowl XLV: 5 Things You May Not Know About the Packers' Big Man B.J. Raji
By now America knows almost everything about the Packers' fan favorites Clay Matthews, Aaron Rodgers, and John Kuhn. There are countless stories of their rise to success after being overlooked and unwanted.
Nose tackle B.J. Raji may not have the same story as those other star players, but he has been just as spectacular this season and equally loved by cheese heads in Green Bay.
No. 90 is now famous outside of Wisconsin for his unlikely 18 yard interception return for a touchdown in the NFC Championship game against the Bears. His celebration dance is even more of a hit across the web.
Here are a few things you may not know about the second year, baby-faced big man out of Boston College.
His Name Is Busari
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B.J. is short for Busari Raji Jr. I'm not sure why he chose to go by B.J., because Busari Raji sounds like a pretty cool name for a defensive lineman to me.
Anyway, his father is Busari Raji Sr. and his father immigrated to the United States from Nigeria, in Africa.
His Brother Plays College Basketball
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Corey Raji, Busari Jr.'s younger brother, plays Division 1 college hoops at B.J.'s Alma mater, Boston College.
Corey is a senior and starts at forward for the Eagles. He is 6' 6'' and he weighs 119 pounds less than his big bro.
His Parents Are Ministers
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Raji's mother, Mamie, and his father are both pentecostal ministers.
B.J. was also very active in his church when he was young, especially as a drummer and a tutor for children.
He Played Basketball and Offensive Lineman in High School
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Occasionally you will see Raji lined up in the backfield as a blocker for the Packers in goal line situations.
At Westwood Regional High School, he was a three year starter on both sides of the ball as a lineman.
He also played basketball his first two years of high school.
Who knows? Maybe if he stuck with basketball he could've been the next Shaquille O'Neal.
Raji was also considering Wisconsin and Rutgers, but chose to be the anchor of Boston College's d-line.
He Is Nicknamed
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Raji was nicknamed "The Freezer", and it stuck.
The name was made up when B.J. associated himself with former fellow big guy, William Perry, of the Bears.
Perry's nickname was "The Refrigerator". He had been the heaviest player to score a TD in the postseason weighing in at 335 pounds, until Raj's runback.
Perry's one yard rush came in Super Bowl XX, so I suppose he still holds the Super Bowl record, but we'll see if Raji can get his hands on the pigskin in Super Bowl XLV.