The Nigerian Nightmare
The Nigerian Nightmare

The Nigerian Nightmare

My Journey Out of Africa to the Kansas City Chiefs and Beyond
By Christian Okoye, By Greg Hanlon


256 Pages, 6 x 9

Formats: Cloth, EPUB, PDF

Cloth, $30.00 (US $30.00) (CA $40.00)

ISBN 9781637272619

Rights: WOR

Triumph Books (Nov 2023)


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Christian Okoye never dreamed of playing football.

He passed hours playing soccer each day in Enugu, Nigeria, until he outgrew the sport—physically. His focus shifted to track and field, honing an elite talent for discus throw that brought him to Azuza Pacific University in California. Only when those Olympic dreams were inexplicably dashed did he pick up a football for the first time at age 23.

By 1987, Okoye was one of the NFL's most beguiling draft prospects, a 260-pound running back who was the picture of raw, unstoppable athleticism. The Kansas City Chiefs selected him in the second round, and the "Nigerian Nightmare" was born.

In this timely autobiography, Okoye unfolds his life story from the heart, detailing a childhood upended by civil war, his unconventional path to football, and his glory years with the Chiefs.

He also candidly discusses the darker facets of his American dream: an existence filled with chronic pain and and memory loss which forces Okoye to grapple honestly with the biggest question: If he had to do it all over again, would he play football?

Author Biography

Christian Okoye played running back for the Kansas City Chiefs from 1987 to 1992, the NFL's first NIgerian and first African player. Okoye led the league in rushing yards in 1989 and was selected to two Pro Bowl teams during his career. In 1990 he founded the Christian Okoye Foundation to help underprivileged children assume their role in society through education and sports.

Greg Hanlon is an editor at People magazine who has written for Sports Illustrated, The New York Times, The New York Times Magazine and Slate. He is the co-author of A Giant Win with Tom Coughlin and Watch My Smoke with Eric Dickerson

Book Signings

Past Events

The Nigerian Nightmare ›
Kansas City, MO
Join author Christian Okoye for a signing of his new book, 'The Nigerian Nightmare,' at Kelly's Westport Inn in Kansas City, MO.