Rochester, Rochester HillsApril 26, 2013
Stoney Creek graduate taken No. 1 in NFL draft
By Christian Davis
C & G Sports Writer
NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell walked to the podium inside Radio City Music Hall in New York City April 25 and made the announcement.
“With the first pick in the 2013 NFL draft, the Kansas City Chiefs select Eric Fisher, tackle, Central Michigan,” he told the crowd.
With those words, Fisher became the first player ever selected from the Mid-American Conference and Central Michigan University as the No. 1 pick.
Byron Leftwich previously held the mark as the highest MAC player taken, selected seventh in the 2003 draft.
Fisher’s odyssey has taken him from a two-star recruit (according to Rivals.com) at Rochester Hills Stoney Creek to a third-team All-America at Central.
At Stoney Creek, where he graduated in 2009, Fisher had been a one-way starter at outside linebacker until his senior year before taking over at tackle.
Former Stoney Creek coach Calvin Gross remembers the first time Fisher approached him and told him that he wanted to play collegiate football and on both sides of the ball.
“We had some kids graduating and I thought, ‘Great, he wants to play offensive line,’” Gross remembers. “It’s just amazing. My wife makes fun of me because I say he’s a hard worker a thousand times in interviews, but what else can I say. He wanted to compete and play at the next level and do the best that he could.”
Fisher started 13 games for the Chippewas this season and was a relative unknown to many draft analysts until his showing at the Senior Bowl in January.
During that week of practice, the 6-foot-8, 305-pounder caught the attention of NFL scouts with his work ethic and performances against other sought after prospects.
“I’m very proud of him, the school and the kids are very proud of him and what he has done. It was a privilege to coach him. He’s such a coachable kid, he listened well and was a leader on the field,” Gross said. “The thing about him too, is that he’s a very good football player, but he’s also a great kid. He’s just a really neat kid, and this is happening to a really good person.”
Following the selection, Fisher expressed his excitement via Twitter (@Big_Fish79).
“I’m a Kansas City Chief and it feels amazing! I’m speechless right now but also so blessed! Feels good to be number one!!!” he tweeted.