JONESBORO, Ark. – Former Arkansas State football standout defensive end and First Team All-Sun Belt Conference selection Chris Odom was announced Wednesday as the United States Football League’s (USFL) Defensive Player of the Year.
Playing for the Houston Gamblers, Odom racked up a USFL-best 12.5 sacks to go along with 8.0 tackles for loss, 43 tackles and six forced fumbles during the league’s inaugural season. Additionally, A-State’s second all-time leader in career blocks (5) posted four blocked field goals on the year for Houston.
Odom, who has also spent time in the National Football League (NFL), Canadian Football League (CFL) and Alliance of American Football (AAF), led a Gamblers’ defense that ranked first in the league in forced fumbles (14), tied for first in interceptions (13) and second in sacks (26).
The Arlington, Texas, native finished his career at Arkansas State in 2016 and is currently ranked 10th in career sacks (16.5) and second in blocked kicks (5) in school history. He put together a dominant senior season, earning First Team All-Sun Belt recognition after recording 12.5 sacks, 17.5 tackles for loss and four forced fumbles.
Odom is one of three former Arkansas State players currently on a USFL roster, including wide receiver Jonathan Adams Jr. with the New Orleans Breakers and Cody Brown with the Philadelphia Stars. Adams has posted 31 receptions for 406 yards and three touchdowns, while Brown has 57 tackles to his credit.
COURTESY ARKANSAS STATE ATHLETICS