Nour-Eddine Seidnaly: France’s NCAA Division 1 Export

When you think of football in Arkansas, you are not expecting to see a kid from a Paris suburb.

But then again, it’s impossible to miss Nour-Eddine Seidnaly, the 6’5″, 330 pound lineman from Clichy, France. The massive offensive lineman has been a staple on Arkansas States offense the past three seasons. Since joining the Red Wolves program, Seidnaly has been a consistent contributor on the offensive line. In 2018 after a redshirt season preparing for division one football, the big Frenchmen started eight games at offensive tackle for an offense that finished the season ranked 17th in the nation, and a team that wound up with an 8-5 record. After sitting out 2019 with a knee injury, Seidnaly came back strong in 2020 earning back his starting spot as Arkansas State’s left tackle.

Representing France at the Division 1 level of college football is important to Seidnaly :

“It feels great to know I got people supporting me through this long process and it motivates me to go harder everyday”

Before he ended up playing against top division one talent in one of the leading football regions in America, Seidnaly had an unusual journey. In fact, he only discovered through his PlayStation. After a couple years of his interest and his growing massive body emboldened him to try the game and he joined the Les Molosses d’Asnières football club in France.

In his late teens, Seidnaly and his family moved to Silver Spring Maryland. This meant leaving his native country, friends, and family behind in France, and Seidnaly knew it would be a challenge for him to adjust to a new country, language, and culture. He struggled with his new language and this kept him from trying out for the Bethesda Chevy-Chase Barons football team. Finally, encouraged by his friends, he signed up in his junior year.  He fell into it naturally and became dominant defensive lineman who used his size and raw athleticism to terrorize local Maryland high school quarterbacks.

“As my English got better and I started having friends around the school I was told to play football by some of them because of my size and I’ve never stopped since!”

After graduating from high school, he headed north to ASA Junior College in Brooklyn, New York. The coaches as ASA told him he had Division 1 potential but due to his late start needed to refine his skills. So they went to work, switching him to offensive line. It seems Div. 1 coaches were in agreement agreed with the change. After two years at ASA, the former Les Molosses d’Asnières player had collected over 20 Division 1 offers.

“Switching from defense to offense was a lot harder than what I thought because you have to be a lot more detailed, disciplined, and consistent to play offensive line.”

Seidnaly’s focus is now to turn pro and chase his dream of playing in the NFL.  There is no doubt the 6’5″ lineman has the size to turn scouts’ heads. Now, his determination and toughness coupled with his skills will be the keys. The Clichy native has come a long way from his humble football beginnings in France and it would seem that he is not done yet.

“My plans for the future are to play football in the NFL soon!”

Alex is a former professional American football player who is now studying in London. His goal writing for AFI is to stay involved with the game that has given him so much. Alex enjoys covering leagues and players and sharing different football stories from across the globe.