Patience & Persistence Pays Off Big For URI WR Ivory Frimpong

At Long Last, It’s Frimpong’s Time

Ivory Frimpong
Photo courtesy of URI Athletics
YURVIEW WILL TELECAST URI VS. STONY BROOK FOOTBALL THIS SATURDAY, OCTOBER 2nd AT NOON. YURVIEW IS COX CHANNEL 4 IN RI.

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Ivory Frimpong had little choice but to bide his time. Such was the case when the wide receiver room at the University of Rhode Island was bursting at the seams with talent.

The days of taking a back seat to Aaron Parker, Isaiah Coulter, and Ahmere Dorsey have ceased to exist. No longer does Frimpong have to fight for his proverbial piece of the pie. The 6-foot-3 senior from Centreville, Va. continues to author his own personal redemption story – from supporting cast member to becoming a central figure in the Rams’ passing attack.

 

 

Statistically speaking, Frimpong continues to make the most out of spending a lot of time on the field. The turnaround can be traced back to the abbreviated three-game 2021 spring football season that included the first 100-yard receiving game of his URI career and team seasonal highs in both receptions (14) and yards (186). Three games into the current season, Frimpong once again finds himself sitting atop as the team leader in receptions (14) and yards (224).

At long last, it’s Frimpong’s time. Understandably, he’s determined to make the most of his featured role as a leading man in his final go-around in Kingston.

“It feels like I was doing what I was supposed to be doing. Everything is coming naturally,” said Frimpong.

Noted URI head coach Jim Fleming, “He’s a good testament to a relatively healthy program when you look at depth and Ivory waiting for his turn. I think it was a frustrating role for him because he’s a talented receiver in his own right. I’ve seen him relentlessly continue to improve on a year-in and year-out basis. He works extremely hard and is committed to being the best he can be. Now he’s in a feature role for us.”

Frimpong has been on the URI campus since 2017. He arrived the same time as Coulter and one year ahead of Dorsey. That same year, Parker was a sophomore.

For three seasons, Frimpong watched Parker and Coulter terrorize opposing defensive backs. In 2019, Dorsey emerged as a third spoke in the proverbial wheel. It was a potent trio that amassed 2,868 combined yards on 196 catches and 21 touchdowns.

Ivory Frimpong
Photo courtesy of URI Athletics

Wish to know who was the Rams’ fourth-leading receiver from 2019? Look no further than Frimpong. His season totals were modest – 122 yards on 14 catches – and would have been a solid one-game effort for any of the three URI receivers that happened to be ahead of him on the depth chart.

“You want to play early in your career,” said Frimpong, “but seeing the guys there at the time, I was like ‘wow.’ It didn’t seem like a quote-on-quote FCS receiver group.”

Mind you, two of the players that helped make it next to impossible for Frimpong to contribute on even a semi-regular basis went on to experience life in the NFL. Coulter was selected by the Houston Texans in the fifth round of the 2020 draft. He’s currently on the Chicago Bears practice squad. Parker was signed to the Carolina Panthers practice squad after spending time on the Dallas Cowboys practice squad in 2020.

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YURVIEW WILL TELECAST URI VS. STONY BROOK FOOTBALL THIS SATURDAY, OCTOBER 2nd AT NOON. YURVIEW IS COX CHANNEL 4 IN RI.

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“To be able to watch them work and compete and being able to see the things they did daily, it motivated me for sure. It also humbled me in the sense that I was behind those guys … standing on the sidelines and cheering them on,” said Frimpong.

Understandably, Frimpong sought to be more of a factor. Life as a special teams contributor and part-time receiver was a narrative he sought to change.

“Patience was everything. I’m a big believer in God. He helped me through that point in time. Just stay down until it was time to come up,” said Frimpong. “When you’re not playing a lot, you’ve got to make sure you’re keeping those routines and habits. The real testament of a football player is how to act when you’re not succeeding … coming to work every day when you’re not the guy and not receiving applause when you’re walking into the locker room. What type of person are you going to be then?

“To be able to contribute to the team was something that was important to me,” he added.

Eventually, the gold mine of WR talent passed the baton after Parker, Coulter, and Dorsey departed following the 2019 season. Finally Frimpong could look forward to spending more time as a game-day contributor. The roadblocks that caused him to wait for his turn were no longer in URI’s fold.

“I’m not going to lie. There were times when I was like, ‘Man, I don’t want to come in today.’ I was feeling down, but that’s when you pick yourself up. I have no other option but to work. That’s what I would try to do,” said Frimpong, “but all those guys as well as [URI receivers coach Donovan Varner] helped pave the way for me.”

When COVID-19 hit, Frimpong passed the time by diving into other passions, namely podcasting and video editing. In June 2020, he coordinated a video on behalf of his URI teammates that addressed the Black Lives Matter movement.

“At that time, coaches were trying to bring these topics up to the team. One day we were on a Zoom call and asking what we could do to show our support,” said Frimpong.

Frimpong volunteered to collect soundbites and put them all together. The finished product was titled “Together We Stand” and featured on www.gorhody.com.

“That was an awesome experience,” said Frimpong, currently interning with the URI Sports Information Department and on track to graduate this December with a degree in communications. “To see my teammates come together as one was really cool.”