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Former Linsly Player and Basketball Star Jibri Blount Signs With Dolphins

Tight End is the Son Of Pro Football Hall Of Famer Mel Blount

North Carolina Central forward Jibri Blount, right, battles Louisville guard Darius Perry, left, for the ball during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game in Louisville, Ky., Sunday, Nov. 17, 2019. (AP Photo/Timothy D. Easley)

WHEELING — Former Linsly football player Jibri Blount, the son of Pro Football Hall of Famer and former Steelers’ cornerback Mel Blount, has signed a contract to play for the Miami Dolphins.

Jibri transferred from Linsly after his sophomore year and went on to have a stellar prep basketball career at Akron St. Vincent-St. Mary and played college hoops at Cleveland State and North Carolina Central but hasn’t stepped on the football field since he left Linsly.

Despite the lack of playing time, the Dolphins liked what they saw from the 6-foot-5, 245-pounder — signing him as a tight end.

“I’m just really overwhelmed with joy, excitement and a lot of emotion,” Jibri said. “I’m super thankful for the Dolphins’ organization for the opportunity they’ve given me.

“My main sport was basketball and it’s always going to be a part of me. I’ve made some great connections and met some of my closest friends through basketball but I’m excited for the things that God is doing in my life now and this stretch coming up.”

Jibri’s time at Linsly also helped prepare him for this upcoming journey on and off the field.

“I had some challenging times but Linsly was a great experience for me because a lot of different people there taught me different things about myself,” Jibri said. “Moving forward, that was always something I wanted to carry with me to help me continue to grow and be a better person every day of my life. So, that was one of the main things I took with me.”

Jibri was a standout on the hardwood, earning Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference Player of the Year as a senior at North Carolina Central, where he led the conference in minutes per game (36.8) and steals per game (2.2).

He finished third in the conference in scoring (19.2 PPG) and rebounding (9.5 RPG) and fifth in field goal percentage (52.5%) in 31 starts.

Before transferring to North Carolina Central, Jibri scored 277 points and charted 158 rebounds in two seasons with Cleveland State but is ready to follow in his father’s footsteps to the game he’s always loved.

“I played football at Linsly for a couple of years and I’ve always loved football,” Jibri said. “I’ve always been able to play the game and I’m ready to get back to it.

“My dad, being who he is, and my brother have been great influences for me. Watching my dad’s professionalism every day of his life. He just turned 73 last week and that was a great milestone for him, considering that he got up and worked hard every day to do the thing that he loved. That has always been inspiring to me. I’m flying back from Miami right now to spend time with him and my mom for Mother’s Day.”

Mel Blount was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1989 after playing 200 games for the Steelers, where he hauled in 57 interceptions over a 14-year career. He was a four-time Super Bowl Champion, bringing home the Lombardi Trophy in 1975, 76, 79 and 80, while earning a trip to the Pro Bowl five times.

Jibri’s brother Akil spent time in training camp with the Dolphins in 2016 as an undrafted free agent.

The former Cadet will be among six tight ends in training camp for the Dolphins this year with standout Mike Gesicki and Durham Smythe both entering the final year of their rookie contracts. Gesicki led the team last year with six touchdown grabs.

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