In 2012 Atlanta, Georgia native Wallace Miles was signed by the Detroit Lions out of North Carolina A&T University. Miles grew up watching Barry Sanders and the Lions making this opportunity a dream come true but the opportunity didn’t just fall from the sky. He’s been in love with the game of football since he began watching Sanders as a kid but played soccer until he was allowed to be on the football field and signed up to play football for the Westlake High School Lions. At Westlake he played alongside NFL MVP quarterback Cam Newton and although he wanted to be a running back or wide receiver because of his background as a soccer player he was made a kicker for the Lions. Wallace Miles was a kicker at Westlake High School but still spent time practicing and training at the wide receiver position “to become the next Jerry Rice,” he said but, “I only played the very last game of my High School career at receiver. Someone went down at receiver and the coaches knew I was athletic and practiced at receiver so I filled in.”
After spending one game at receiver throughout his entire high school career Miles entered his recruiting process as a receiver but because of his experience as a kicker it was hard for coaches to see him as a wide receiver out of the gate. He was recruited and walked on as a kicker at North Carolina A&T in 2007 but he told himself when he became an Aggie that he wouldn’t be a kicker ever again and how he will be a receiver moving forward. As a receiver at North Carolina A&T he became the first player in school history to lead the school in receiving in each of the four years as an Aggie. This, and his time spent in the off-seasons training with CFL Hall of Fame receiver Milt Stegall earned himself that dream come true opportunity with the Detroit Lions but that was not the only opportunity that Miles was approached by in 2012.
While getting the opportunity to live out his dream as a professional football player with the Detroit Lions, walking the same halls that his idol Barry Sanders walked one day Wallace Miles began writing a book which just released this May. “My mom actually thought of the book.” Miles mentioned, “I had a true underdog story, having been a kicker and walking on at NC A&T then getting that professional opportunity it was clear that this story could inspire others. I started writing in 2012 and just recently finished making them, having them all available to buy. It took about 8 times to write and get the right story across but it is super exciting to have done.” He stated, “It’s really fulfilling because the 8 years that I spent writing the book and the different drafts I wrote for it I evolved and the evolution of Wallace Miles is in that book.”
That book, ‘Underr8ted’ that goes through the entire Wallace Miles story leading up to his professional career which came to Canada in the CFL with the Winnipeg Blue Bombers, Ottawa Redblacks, Edmonton Eskimos and Toronto Argonauts is a part of a series of projects that Miles has worked on and continues to work on with his motivation start up ‘Change Your Cleats’. Change Your Cleats goes all the way back to when Miles changed his own cleats from the ones he used as a kicker to those he used as a receiver and will continue to touch on subjects that he believes can inspire the next generation of athletes. He said, “My goal is to enrich those and inspire those who get their hands on the book or are able to come across my platform.” and continued, “If I can create real connections and relationships with people around the world from my story I wouldn’t only benefit others but I would benefit as well.”