The Columbus Lions made a splash in free agency as the team signed defensive lineman Jamar King. King, from Detroit, Michigan, was a highly sought out JUCO recruit in 2015. He was a 4-star prospect and ranked 16th overall in the 247Sports JUCO rankings. King would sign with the Alabama Crimson Tide over Ohio State. While King only saw two games in 2016, in 2017 he became a rotational piece on Alabama’s defensive line that would end up beating Georgia 26-23 in overtime for the National Championship.
King’s curious road to Alabama was indeed a weird one as he was the oldest member of the national championship team at 28-years-old. According to an article written by the Detroit Free Press, King had to overcome odds against his favor growing up. While he graduated from Denby in 2008, King’s father would undergo triple-bypass and back surgeries as his mother was without work for portions of those times. That is when King decided to help his family and make ends meet. He would work at the Shelby Township factory for the next six years, 10-hour shifts. "We were going through really tough times and I was concerned for my siblings, so I had to do something to help support them," he said, "but it was not easy” according to his quote from the Detroit Free Press.
While King had interest from the Oakland Raiders and was part of the CFL’s Edmonton Eskimos, Lion's head coach Jason Gibson also drawn to the defensive lineman. “I met Jamar at a workout for an upcoming movie, his personality is contagious, and obviously he is a great football player. I can see him becoming a fan favorite,” Gibson said about his new signee.