Michael Oher was born on May 18, 1986. Michael was one of the twelve children born to Michael Jerome Williams Sr. and Denise Oher. Michael Sr. and Denise Oher provided their kids with little to no support. Michael Sr. was in prison, and his mother, Denise, was addicted to crack cocaine. As a result to his father in prison and is mother’s addiction; Michael Jr. was in foster homes at the age of seven, and out of different foster homes. He was frequently homeless. He also received really little attention and discipline.
Michael did poorly in school. He had no one to help him with his schooling as a kid. He repeated first and second grade. He attempted 11 different schools during nine years as a student. Michael’s estranged father was murdered when Michael was a senior in high school.
When Michael was 16 years old (2004); Sean and Leigh Tuohy took him in. The Touhy’s became his legal guardian when Michael was 17. Sean and Leigh had a daughter and a son. Sean and Leigh hired a tutor for Michael to help him with school work. The tutor worked with Michael for 20 hours per week.
Michael earned two letters each in track and basketball. He averaged 22 points and 10 rebounds a game, earning All-State honors by helping lead the basketball team to a 27–6 record, winning the district championship as a senior. Michael was also a state runner-up in the discus as a senior in high school.
Michael’s low grades in school were a barrier to his acceptance to an NCAA program. He eventually increased his 0.76 GPA to a 2.52 GPA by the end of his senior year, so he could be able to attend a Division I school by enrolling in some 10-day-long internet-based courses from Brigham Young University. Brigham Young University is located in Provo, Utah. Taking and passing his internet courses allowed Michael to replace his D’s and F’s earned in earlier school classes. Michael raised his grades A’s by using the internet This finally raised his graduating GPA over the required minimum that is required to graduate.
In Michaels’s Junior year in high school at Memphis high school; he began to get good at football. He was starting left tackle on the varsity football team. When Michael was a senior in high school; Michael was named Division II Lineman of the year in 2003. He was also No. 5 offensive linemen prospect in the country. Michael became a top football prospect in Tennessee very quickly, and that led to multiple scholarship offers from Division 1 schools.
Michael decided to play for the University of Mississippi, even though he got scholarships offers from Tennessee, Louisiana State, Alabama, Auburn, and South Carolina. His decision to play for the Ole Miss football team started an investigation by the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA). The first issue was that Michael's GPA was too low to meet the requirements for a Division I scholarship at the time of the offer from Ole Miss. The problem was corrected by graduation, when Michael completed online classes through Brigham Young University. The second issue was the Tuohys' pre-existing relationship with Ole Miss and the fact that Ole Miss hired Freeze twenty days after Michael signed his Letter of Intent. Michael started in ten games as a guard during his first season with Ole Miss. He became a first-team freshman All American. After shifting to the position of left tackle for the 2006 season, he was named to various preseason All-Conference and All-American teams. Michael was named a second-team Southeastern Conference offensive lineman after his sophomore season and a first-team SEC offensive lineman after his junior season. Michael was also successful academically at Ole Miss, and his tested IQ score increased 20 to 30 points between when he was public school to when he was in college.
On January 14, 2008, Michael decided that he would be entering the NfL in 2008. However, two days later, he announced his withdrawal from the draft to return to Ole Miss for his senior season. After the 2008 season, Michael was recognized as a unanimous first-team All-American made the honor roll for the second. He also graduated with a degree in criminal justice in the spring of 2009. The Baltimore Ravnes drafted Michael. He was the 23rd pick in the first round of the 2009 NFL Draft. The Ravens had acquired the pick from the New England Patriots in exchange for their first- and fifth-round draft picks. The Tuohy family was there to witness his draft day selection. He was assigned the number 74. He was also number 74 when he was playing for The Ole Miss football team. Michael started every game in 2009. He started 11 time for right tackle, and five times for left tackle.