Search: the blindside
Why: The trailers make me sad, though I suspect this story is meant to be uplifting.
Answer: Michael Oher, who currently plays for the Baltimore Ravens, but grew up in Memphis! Here is the bit about his personal life, which is all that really interests me (because football is boring). Possible movie spoiler alert:
Here's a story about him from CBS, including interviews with Oher and his adoptive family:
Oher's father, murdered while Oher was a junior in high school, was not involved in his upbringing. His mother was addicted to crack cocaine. As a result, he received little constructive attention during his formative years. He repeated both first grade and second grade, and attended eleven different schools during his first nine years as a student. He also alternated between time spent in various foster homes and periods with no fixed address until he was sixteen years old.
That year, Oher applied for admission to a private school, Briarcrest Christian School, at the instigation of acquaintance Tony Henderson, with whom he was staying temporarily. Henderson was sending his son to the school in order to fulfill the dying wish of the boy's grandmother, and he decided that Oher might as well come along. Although the school's football coach was interested in Oher, school administrators did not feel that he was capable of handling the school's academic workload due to his scant educational background; however, he was admitted after he attempted to qualify for admission through a home-study program that removed him from the public education system.
A couple with a daughter at the school, Leigh Anne and Sean Tuohy, allowed Oher to move in with them and began taking care of his needs after becoming familiar with his difficult personal circumstances. They also connected him with a tutor, who worked with him for twenty hours a week. He eventually brought his 0.9 grade point average up to 2.65, by replacing Ds and Fs earned in school classes such as English with As earned in a series of 10-day-long internet-based "character education" courses from Brigham Young University. Later, the Tuohy family adopted him.
The More You Know: Briarcrest has a campus in Eads? Who knew?