Setters Profile: Olatayo Ishola


Photo Courtesy of Pace Athletics

Sean Browne, Editor in Chief

College has been a roller coaster experience for Pace defensive end Olatayo Ishola. He has seen failures but he has seen those failures turn into success.

Out of high school, Olatayo played football at junior college, noting that he was not ready to face that challenge of a four – year college.

“It had a lot to do with grades,” Ishola said. “Also to develop more as a player and a person.”

While some may view having to play at junior college as lousy, Ishola saw it through a different perspective.

“Me going to Junior College was probably one of my best decisions,” Ishola said. “I matured so much, it was two hours away from home, it got my mind off a lot of things.”

Although Olatayo admits this was not easy, especially being away from home. Luckily he was able to bring home to Lackawanna Junior College.

“I had my twin brother and two friends were also here,” Ishola said. “We kind of like kept each other going.”

With the help of friends and family, Ishola was able to achieve success on and off the gridiron.

Olatayo did very well in his classes, also he changed his demeanor when it came to football.

“I did late night sessions in the weight room,” Ishola said. “I got bigger and eating more, so my physical appearance looked better. The coaches over there got me ready for the next level.”

The next level for Ishola was transferring to Pace in 2014, and he was able to transfer his lessons from junior college to Pace.

When I came to Pace I was really ahead in my knowledge of football,” Ishola  said. “I was able to teach a lot of people here and it got them better.”

But while things were initially going so well, he was again faced with adversity as he was sidelined for the entire 2015 season with injuries.

“It was definitely hard , I was crying a lot, said Ishola.” I just kept asking myself why is this happening to me.”

His injury caused him to red-shirt, so just like his experience at junior college, Ishola was able to turn his injury into a positive.

“I got stronger with the help of my coaches,” Ishola said. “It was honestly a blessing for me.”

It was also a blessing for him in the classroom, for his red-shirt season allowed him the stay at Pace and take enough classes for him to graduate this year.

Ishola was ready to play for his final season of eligibility and though his team has gotten off to a 0-4 start Ishola a shined on the field.

He was named Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) Football Defensive Player of the Week for the week ending Sept. 18, 2016.