Former Spartan/NFL Offensive Lineman Ulish Booker Impacting America One Person at a Time!

During his time at MSU, Ulish Booker did things the right way. A standout offensive lineman, Ulish was known for his work ethic, leadership, and tenacity. There may have been guys blessed with more talent than Ulish, but no absolutely out worked him.

After career at Michigan State, Booker played professional football in the NFL and in Europe, winning a Super Bowl with the Pittsburg Steelers in 2006. During his first ever appearance on Spartan Nation Radio, Ulish told listeners that despite all of success he has earned during his football career, the relationships he built with his Spartan teammates remains his greatest achievement.

“They always say (the coaches) when you come in as a freshmen that it’s going to go by fast and you will develop lifelong relationships with these guys.” Sure enough, his coaches were right and Ulish takes great pride in the lasting bonds he created with his fellow Spartans. “I would say that’s my greatest achievement, being able to put myself in a position where guys respect me, respect my character and my integrity, and my accountability towards them at the time that we played and even now.”

As a former player deeply invested in the Spartan football family, Ulish was “on cloud 15 for weeks” after watching his Spartans triumph this season at the Big Ten Championship game and in the Rose Bowl.  He may not have been in the Spartan locker room after the game, but Ulish told listeners that he danced by himself after the Big Ten Championship game victory “feeling some type of way”.

Ulish understood that MSU’s magical Rose Bowl championship this season was not just a singular accomplishment to be enjoyed by one team. He, and others before him, blazed a path for current Spartans and seeing that hard work culminate this season in such a special way is not something he will soon forget.

“Nobody else could understand the sense of accomplishment and all the hard work that the guys, even before me, had laid down.” All the past players, he remarked, “played a part” in what MSU was able to accomplish this season. “To sit there and see the success of this team, it really did my heart well.”

While many people simply know him as a terrific football player, Ulish is so much more. For years, Ulish has worked with foster homes and boarding house, providing guidance to at risk kids. After finishing his football career, Ulish started a company called First Foot Forward that offers youth and family mentoring and guidance services. Passionate about making a positive difference in the lives of others, Ulish says he has successfully parleyed his degree from MSU into a career working with families.

Ulish is also extremely active in his Church. He serves as the vice-president of an urban outreach program that provides assistance and guidance to families in need.

His most important job, however, is his work as father to his two daughters. A terrific dad, Ulish understands that fatherhood comes first. Sadly, however, more and more children in America do not have a father to rely on.  He shares the sentiments of Spartan Nation founder Hondo S. Carpenter, Sr. that America has a crisis of fatherhood. 

The two men talked about that on Carpenter’s radio show.  Booker said, “I think that there is a significant epidemic going on as it relates to fathers abandoning their children,” adding “it’s something that’s spreading like wildfire and is getting worse and worse as time progress.” Men, he stressed, must realize what their presence means to their children. “What guys have to understand is that those kids, they’re are going to need someone at some point in their life, and it’s a shame when a kid grows up not having fundamental moral principles that will carry them and help them sustain and be productive citizens in society.”

The Spartan Nation is lucky to be represented by a guy as classy as Ulish Booker. From his days in college, to his years in the pros, to his work off the field, Ulish has consistently gone about things the right way. His integrity as a man makes him a great ambassador for not only for MSU football players, but for Spartans everywhere and we here at Spartan Nation are proud to call him one of our own.

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