The News Courier in Athens, Alabama

Sports

February 2, 2013

'Blind Side' family relishes Big Easy Super Bowl

(Continued)

"She's a great advocate of doing the right thing. She's a big giver," Leigh Anne Tuohy said. "She follows Michael's career every step of the way. It's funny. I'll get texts during the game: 'Why did they do this? They shouldn't have done that.'"

Leigh Anne Tuohy, a petite blonde who talks a mile a minute in a thick Southern accent, is very similar to the way she was portrayed by Bullock — so much so that Sean Tuohy describes it as "scary."

"She hit it right down to the look, the action, the whole thing," he said.

While dining with a large group of friends and family at a downtown New Orleans restaurant, Leigh Anne Tuohy wore a V-neck T-shirt with a sequined Ravens logo on it. With this being Super Bowl weekend, she said she was "going to be all sparkle and dazzle and rock-n-roll."

"This is way more fun, more exciting, more hyped up than Oscar week," she said. "Way more. It can't even compare."

The Tuohys have been to Super Bowls before, but only as casual fans. Because Oher and their son S.J. (which stands for Sean Jr.) are such big sports fans, the family often planned vacations around major sporting events.

This, of course, is different, and not only because Oher is in the game. One of Oher's best friends is 49ers linebacker Patrick Willis, a former teammate at Ole Miss.

"I can remember when Patrick Willis and Michael would sit in our living room and practice writing their autographs," Leigh Anne Tuohy said. "Well now they're really doing that and we're just really proud.

Like Oher, Willis also was raised by foster parents.

"These are great guys," Leigh Anne Tuohy said. "So their stories give us a platform to go around and say, there's a lot of great kids out there that need a chance."

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