Former Clayton State Laker Gideon Oji Finishes Seventh at Nationally Televised Nathan's Famous Hot Dog Eating Contest

Former Clayton State Laker Gideon Oji Finishes Seventh at Nationally Televised Nathan's Famous Hot Dog Eating Contest

CONEY ISLAND, N.Y. – Making his fifth straight appearance and entering as the No. 5 ranked professional eater in the world, and by far the tallest at an imposing 6-9, former Clayton State men's basketball player Gideon Oji (Imane-in-Koji, Nigeria) finished strong as he tied for 7-of-18 at the corner of Surf and Stillwell in the 2019 Nathan's Famous Hot Dog Eating Contest.
 
The event aired live and worldwide on ESPN2 and will air again on tape delay on that channel several times throughout the day.
 
Competing against the best eaters in the world on the biggest stage, Oji downed 34 hot dogs and buns. That placed him behind 12-time champion Joey Chestnut (71), Darron Breeden (50), Geoff Esper (47), 2016 champion Matt Stonie (46), Max Suzuki (39) and Nick Wehry (36). His 34 HDB's (Hot Dogs and Buns) tied him with Matt Hazzard and were four shy of equaling his personal best of 38 that he set three years ago at Coney.
 
Directly prior to the competition, Oji was introduced to crowd and viewing audience by President of Major League Eating, and Fourth of July staple, George Shea, who had this to say about Oji upon his introduction.

"Gideon the exalted. He stands 6-9 inches tall, seven feet from tip of wing to tip of wing. He is the kale eating champion of the world, ranked No. 5 in the world. Thirty eight hot dogs and buns. Ladies and gentleman, from Zaire, Nigeria by way of Morrow, Georgia - GIDEON OJI!"
 
Additionally, the ESPN 2 broadcast crew followed that intro with this nugget. "Played basketball for the Lakers, that's the Division II Clayton State Lakers in Georgia, representing one of five different countries today."
 
Always a favorite, last year it was "At 6-9 he was a Laker before LeBron, he played DII ball at Clayton State. The Truth they call him."
 
In his fourth full year of professional eating, Oji has established himself as one of the top competitors in the world in a number of disciplines. Those include being the World Champion for both Kale and Green Chile Stew along with career earnings of $54,550 and the fourth most in 2018 with $16,300.
 
It is also the fifth consecutive year that Oji was the lone former NCAA student-athlete competing, representing Division II, in the 103rd Annual Nathan's Famous Hot Dog Eating Contest.
 
2019 Nathan's Famous Hot Dog Eating Contest Final Results
1. 71 Joey Chestnut  
2. 50 Darron Breeden           
3. 47 Geoffrey Esper
4. 46 Matt Stonie      
5. 39 Max Suzuki      
6. 36 Nick Wehry     
T7. 34 Gideon Oji     
T7. 34 Matt Hazzard  
9.  29 Juan Neave      
T10. 28.5 Ronnie Hartman    
T10. 28.5 Adam Moran         
T12. 27 Derek Jacobs
T12. 27 Pablo Martinez         
T14. 26 George Chiger          
T14. 26 Adrian Morgan         
T14. 26 Juan Rodriguez         
T16. 22.5 Steve Hendry         
T16. 22 Darrien Thomas