06/13/13Author: Josh Katzenstein - The Detroit News
Lions’ Ezekiel Ansah angles into a little humor in fishing debut
Milford Township — Rookie defensive end Ezekiel Ansah’s first time fishing surely provided some lasting memories for everyone on his boat.
Participating in the Kevin VanDam Charity Classic at Kensington Metro Park’s Kent Lake, Ansah didn’t catch any fish, but hooked something a little bigger.
“He caught a human,” Lions defensive end Willie Young said after hearing the tale.
Sure enough, Ansah accidentally sunk his hook into the back of Chris Robinson, a 32-year-old Carhartt employee from Grosse Pointe.
“I didn’t know it was in my back at all until I heard (someone on the boat) laughing,” Robinson said.
Ansah fished with Robinson, another Carhartt employee and pro fisherman Terry Scroggins from Florida. Scroggins said it took two tries to pull the hook out of Robinson’s back because it also was caught on his shirt. The two tugs left only a pin-sized wound below his right shoulder.
Ansah joined several current and former Lions for the annual fishing tournament, including Herman Moore, Eric Hipple, Riley Reiff and Brandon Pettigrew.
The event included a dinner event with fans, a raffle and a silent auction, with several signed items from local professional athletes. Half of the proceeds went to VanDam’s charity and the other half went to the Lions’ Living for the City program.
Although Ansah didn’t catch any fish himself, he still enjoyed his first crack at a new sport.
“It was frustrating not catching any fish, but it was fun,” he said. “I don’t know how those fishermen do it, waiting forever to catch just one fish, but I guess this was just a test of my patience.”
Robinson said Ansah was very apologetic on the boat, and he doesn’t hold any grudges because there wasn’t much room with four people on the boat.
Ansah’s performance was hardly embarrassing as those on many boats struggled during the overcast day. Lions coach Jim Schwartz rode with VanDam, but they caught only one bass big enough to qualify.
Schwartz said it’s “refreshing” to see Ansah, a Ghana native, go through all of these new experiences.
“I think the thing it shows about Ziggy is just how open he is to the whole experience,” Schwartz said. “He hadn’t fished before, but he hasn’t sheltered himself. He’s gone out and had fun. Everything that he does is sort of new and he’s embraced that whole process.”
Even though Ansah was a rookie fisherman Monday, Lions linebacker Stephen Tulloch said he planned to razz him if he didn’t catch any fish.
“Since I’ve known Ziggy, a lot of things here since he’s been in Detroit are his first time. Ziggy’s very raw at a lot of things,” Tulloch said, noting his struggles during Saturday’s softball game. “We’ll keep him on the field and keep working the outside rushes a little bit.”
If Ansah rushes the edge well, all of his other struggles will be forgiven. Of course, before the event, Ansah was confident he’d catch on quickly.
“We come here and (Young is) like, ‘Hey, Ziggy, we’re not on the same team now,’ ” Ansah said. “I was like, ‘OK, I see how it is. Hopefully I’m going to get me a bigger fish.’ ”
Ansah caught something bigger, but it wasn’t a fish.
Young, an avid angler, stayed out past the 5 p.m. deadline and was disqualified, so since Ansah’s boat had an eligible fish, he technically beat his fellow defensive end.
Ansah, though, was upset his boat couldn’t keep its biggest fish of the day, a northern pike.
“I was like, ‘Y’all didn’t just let this fish go away,’ ” he said.
And, oddly enough, before they went fishing Scroggins told Ansah, “I can pull a hook out like nobody’s business.”
They just thought the hook would be pulled out of fish, not a person.
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From The Detroit News: http://www.detroitnews.com/article/20130610/SPORTS0101/306050073#ixzz2W6fyseF4