Nov. 18, 2005
#22 Ambrose Wooden
Junior, 6-0, 195
Baltimore, Md./The Gilman School
Junior cornerback Ambrose Wooden moved into the Notre Dame starting lineup this fall at cornerback and has made the most of the opportunity. In the eight games leading up to the Navy contest on Nov. 12, the former wide receiver led the team in solo tackles with 47 and was second overall with 55 behind Brandon Hoyte’s 61. Wooden also had two interceptions on the season and was credited with five breaking up five passes. Moved from wide receiver to defensive back before the start of the 2004 season. A former Baltimore Sun all-metro offensive player of the year and all-Baltimore City/County offensive player of the year as a quarterback at the Gilman School, Wooden was a SuperPrep All-American before coming to Notre Dame. GameDay’s Elizabeth Goers gives Irish fans a chance to get to know Ambrose Wooden.
Goers: What is your major and how did you get interested in that area of study?
Wooden: “I am a finance major and I am interested in money. I find it a very interesting major because you learn the ins and outs of numbers.”
Goers: What is your hardest class and why is it your hardest?
Wooden: “My hardest class is international finance because I am not really getting it right now. It’s a tough class.”
Goers: What is your favorite class and why?
Wooden: “My favorite class is my gender and popular media class. We always discuss issues on sexuality and gender and it is a discussion-based class. You learn a lot by talking with others and hearing other people’s opinions.”
Goers: What made you pick Notre Dame over the other schools you were interested in? What were the other schools?
Wooden: “I felt like this was the place for me to be after I made my visit. As far as other schools, there was Stanford, Maryland and Boston College, but after I came here my choice was made.”
Goers: To date, what has been the highlight of your Notre Dame career?
Wooden: “The highlight for me has just playing. I enjoy it every time I am out there whether it’s in practice, game or whatever. It doesn’t make a difference – I love it.”
Goers: Who were your sports idols as a kid and why?
Wooden: “My biggest sports idols were Deion Sanders and then Michael Vick in high school. Now I like Chris McAllister, he plays for the (Baltimore) Ravens.”
Goers: As a football player, is there any one player you modeled your game after?
Wooden: “I try to model my game after Chris McAllister and the way he plays.”
Goers: Who has been your biggest non-sports role model and why?
Wooden: “My biggest role-model is my mom who is a single mom. She works so hard and has two jobs. Her hard work and dedication keeps me going everyday.”
Goers: What is one thing in your life that you cannot live without?
Wooden: “I can’t live without my family and my friends.”
Goers: What is the best advice that you have ever been given and who gave it to you?
Wooden: “As a kid, I was always told to live my dream and work as hard as I can, and that is just what I live by everyday. Everyday I just try to learn something new and make a difference.”
Goers: How do you think you’ve grown as a person since coming to Notre Dame?
Wooden: “Just being around all of these guys and the role models I have had around me the last couple of years; I think I have become a man. I went from a young boy and grew into a young man. I have learned a lot over the last three years through the experiences I have had here.”
Goers: What is one thing about you that might surprise people?
Wooden: “There really isn’t anything about me that would surprise anyone. What you see is what you get. I am always smiling. I am a fairly happy kid.”
Goers: How and what do you do to balance your workload and your football workload?
Wooden: “It’s impossible. You just have to be disciplined, know what you have to do and try to stay ahead.”
Goers: If you were stranded on an island and could only eat one meal, only listen to one song, and spend your time with only one person; what would you eat, what would you listen to and who would you pick?
Wooden: “I would take my mom and her usual Monday meals when I was home – chicken and mashed potatoes and biscuits. The song would be Earth, Wind and Fire’s “Fantasy”.
Goers: What would a movie about your life be titled and who would star as you?
Wooden: “A movie about my life would be called, `The Long Haul’ and I would be played by Nick Cannon.”
Goers: Who is the best athlete that you have ever competed against?
Wooden: “The best athlete I’ve ever competed against would be Reggie Bush from USC. He was amazing.”
Goers: If you had the chance to play golf with anyone in history, besides you, who else would be in your foursome and why would you pick those three people?
Wooden: “I would take Tiger (Woods) because he is the best. I wish I could have met Martin Luther King, and Michael Vick.”
Goers: When your football career is over, what do you see yourself doing?
Wooden: “I would just like to be making a difference in the community. I would like to give kids an opportunity to go to a school like this. That’s what I really want to do. If I have enough money, I would like to give a kid a scholarship to a really good high school so they could have a chance to go to a place like Notre Dame.”
Goers: Describe what it feels like on game day and playing in Notre Dame stadium?
Wooden: “Its hard to describe. It’s amazing. Once I hear the fight song chills go up my back and down my neck.”
Goers: What is your favorite thing about playing for Notre Dame?
Wooden: “My favorite thing about playing at Notre Dame are the emotions, the fans, the whole atmosphere, the tradition – just everything. I just love playing here.”