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ALLEN, Texas - Two years ago, Allen (Texas) High sophomore Cedric Ogbuehi was considered to have enormous potential on as a defensive lineman. However, prior to the start of Ogbuehi's junior campaign, Allen head coach Tom Westerburg had lost both starting offensive tackles. He decided to take advantage of the 6-foot-5, 270-pound Ogbuehi's frame and quick feet and moved him over to the offensive side of the ball in the spring of his sophomore year. Ogbuehi had never played offense before and wasn't exactly a fan of the move at first.
"I was mad" Ogbuehi said. "But then I knew that I needed to do what they team wanted me to."
The move wound up paying off in a number of ways that no one could ever foresee, both for Ogbuehi and his Eagle teammates. Allen suffered the loss of starting quarterback Matt Brown but rode Ogbuehi and his teammates to the school's first Class 5A state title. Ogbuehi himself was good enough not just to make the transition to starting offensive tackle but also to earn both all-district and all-state honors.
During the offseason, Ogbuehi received a four-star ranking from Rivals.com and honors of another kind continued to come in. He received number of scholarship offers and became one of the most sought-after offensive linemen in the state of Texas. He committed to Texas A&M in the spring after an unofficial visit.
Ogbuehi received his biggest honor to date on Tuesday. During a ceremony televised throughout his high school school, Ogbuehi received a jersey commemorating his invitation to participate in the the 2010 U.S. Army All-American game in San Antonio next January.
"It feels really good" said Ogbuehi. "It's a big honor. I'm just thankful that I was chosen to play. All my friends and family were excited, too."
Ogbuehi has been an avid watcher of past All-American games. He was asked if he had ever envisioned himself playing in the event as well.
"I've watched and I would be thinking 'Man, I want to play there' and now I am," he said. "It was a goal before the start of the season, something I wanted to do the whole time."
Ogbuehi is rated as the 139th best prospect in the country by Rivals.com and the No. 15-ranked player in Texas. He is also listed as the 14th best offensive tackle prospect in the country. He and his West teammates will face-off against the East January 9, 2010 at the Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas. The game will be televised live on NBC at 1 p.m. EST.