For an entire decade, Richard Sherman has been one of the NFL’s best and loudest players, breaking individual records while exciting fans and courting controversy. On the field, Sherman is unquestionably a great player, boasting five Pro Bowl appearances in addition to winning the Super Bowl with the Seattle Seahawks in 2014. However, his bombastic post-game behavior made him a target for the anger and discrimination of some of the league’s fan base, propelling him into the national spotlight on more than one occasion. But his tenacious drive toward success began at Stanford University, where he turned a potential setback into an opportunity to achieve greatness. Now as his football career starts winding down, the former Cardinal is preparing for his next chapter, utilizing the education he received in the middle of the bustling Silicon Valley.

As a student at Stanford, Sherman was simultaneously excelling in his athletic program and academics, graduating with a B.A. in Communications; he also got a head start toward a graduate degree in his final year of eligibility. His performance as a starter on both offense and defense helped catapult the school’s football program into an era of sustained success.

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He now invests in his future with the same passion that has drove him to the top of his sport, and he’s leveraging his Stanford experience to tackle Silicon Valley. First, he made safe bets with bonds and funds, and a wise investment in Tesla, but his trademark enthusiasm pushes him toward more active investing. After an early experience launching the sports drink Body Armor, Sherman set his laser focus on the start-up world, concentrating on some young sports medicine ventures—upstarts in the fight against CTE and other football-related brain traumas.

Sherman’s killer instinct also compels him toward the volatile cryptocurrency market, the chaotic changes providing a similar thrill as the gridiron. During his time healing from a ruptured Achilles tendon, an injury that can be career-ending, the cunning Cardinal used his time to study Bitcoin and the rest of the ever-expanding and fickle market. In 2014, Sherman even began accepting Bitcoin for merchandise on his website, proving that he is willing to gamble big on blockchain’s promise. He also advises teammates on financial planning and the stock market, bringing his impassioned leadership into mentoring fellow athletes—including Stanford Cardinals. Although more NFL gold is not out of the question for the 49er, Richard Sherman has his sights set on making a name for himself in the competitive world of venture capitalism, and it won’t take long before he declares himself “the best.”