Originally written on Fox Sports Midwest  |  Last updated 10/17/14
ST LOUIS - Big Al Ogletree has a story about a pile of manure. If you let someone lead you through it once, it's a mistake. But follow that person through it again, and you chose to get that mess on the bottom of your shoes. "Now, you have to choose," Big Al Ogletree said. "Do I want to go this way? Or do I want to go that way?" The father of the St. Louis Rams' second pick in the 2013 NFL Draft sat in the front row of his son's introductory press conference on Friday. His handheld video recorder captured the scene as Alec Ogletree, a sensational linebacker from Georgia, told a room full of cameras how happy and grateful he is that the Rams deemed him worthy of the first round's 30th pick. "It was very exciting, yesterday, to even be a part of the Draft this year," Alec Ogletree said. "I really want to thank the Rams organization for taking a chance on me." A night before, the player who could have been Top-15 selection had plummeted down the draft board, losing approximately 2.5 million as team after team decided he was too risky. His size (6-foot-2, 242-pounds), speed (4.70 40-yard dash) and skills (111 tackles in 10 games as a senior) were desirable. But other issues a misdemeanor theft charge in 2010; a four-game suspension his senior season that has been linked to a failed drug test; and a DUI arrest the week before the NFL Combine caused too many questions. Big Al Ogletree watched his son wrestle with the consequences of his actions as they watched the Draft with an agent. "I think the reality check really hit him last night, with the waiting process to see people's names being called," the father said. "He was dealing with it. I knew in the back of his mind, he was going, 'Man' When I sat down and talked to him, I said, 'Son, what has happened, has happened. You can't change that. It's over and done. If you get the opportunity to get to the NFL no matter what round, what level make good on that.' I'm an old school man. Now you have to sign contracts and all that stuff, but a man's word is his word. If you give your word that you are going to be the man you told them you are, that you know you are, you need to be that man right now." Big Al Ogletree knows about making good on second chances. He had NFL hopes, too. But trouble as a teenager derailed that goal in high school. "The reason I know how hard it can be to see your dream fall, is because that's what happened to me," he said. "I made a bad choice, and did something unfortunate. It didn't work out for me." He was a sophomore when he got in that shoving match with an assistant principal. The adult put hands on him, and he retaliated. The school let him return after his suspension, but football was out of the question. "It can be taken from you before you realize it," Big Al Ogletree said. He did his best to avoid manure after that. He met his wife, Allyson, and had children. Two of the boys were twins, Alec and Alexander (who currently plays fullback at Georgia). The brothers were athletic from the start, and they got a heavy dose of their father's wisdom as he coached their football teams from elementary to high school. Big Al Ogletree often made the brothers, along with their teammates, recite his six most-important principles. 1. Motivation 2. Accountability 3. Control 4. Confidence 5. Focus 6. Hustle There have been moments since Alec Ogletree left his home in Newnan, Ga., that his father's lessons have been forgotten. There have been times, as Big Al Ogletree likes to say, the boy has "fallen off the boat." But the dad wants to believe this chance with the Rams will not be squandered. "He righted his ship again," Big Al Ogletree said as Friday afternoon's event slowed down. "Now is the opportunity for him to show the Rams did not make a mistake choosing him. The people that will be against him will still be against him. I said, 'You can't do nothing about that. But you can do something about you.'" Alec Ogletree knows what it's like to get manure on his shoes. Now, he has to want to walk the other way. You can follow Ben Frederickson on Twitter (@Ben_Fred) and email him at frederickson.ben@gmail.com
PLAYERS: Alec Ogletree
TEAMS: St. Louis Rams

Peyton Manning sets NFL touchdown passing record

Report: CJ Spiller suffers broken collarbone

DeMarco Murray sets record with another 100-yard game

Report: Things got 'ugly' in Bears locker room after loss

Rams beat Seahawks thanks to gutsy fake punt call

Brian Kelly unloads on officials for pass interference call


Redskins bench Kirk Cousins for Colt McCoy

Brett Favre: I got calls about playing last season

Joseph Randle partners with underwear company after arrest

Report: Seahawks asked about Julius Thomas, Jordan Cameron

Florida fans chant for Will Muschamp to be fired

Gennady Golovkin scores second-round knockout win

Video: Alec Burks breaks Kobe Bryant's ankles

WATCH: Sean Payton tells reporter to 'be quiet'

Darnell Dockett mocks Raiders fans with whiteboard

WATCH: Tony Romo nearly runs over Alex Rodriguez

WATCH: Prince Amukamara pulls Dwayne Harris' hair

What was the meaning behind Doug Baldwin's TD celebration?

Luke Kuechly ejected after questionable call

WATCH: Giovanni Bernard gets leveled by Vontae Davis

WATCH: Rams run awesome trick play for punt return TD

Kyle Orton shaves his epic mustache

Florida State beats Notre Dame 31-27 in thriller

LenDale White goes off on USC AD after being escorted out

Rams News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

Report: Marshall calls out Jay Cutler

Darnell Dockett mocks Raiders fans

Brian Kelly unloads on officials

WATCH: Rams run punt return trick play for TD

Joseph Randle now an underwear spokesman?

Ex-Trojans RB escorted out after USC game

FSU tops Notre Dame in thriller

Fans chant for Muschamp's head

Popovich zings Suns owner

Golden Tate reacts to Percy Harvin trade

N.J. gov signs sports betting bill into law

WATCH: Tulane QB Nick Montana spikes ball on 4th down

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.