Akbar is the host of NBC’s three time Emmy nominated series American Ninja Warrior, Universal Kid’s spin off show, American Ninja Warrior Jr as well as NFL Networks’ highest rated show, NFL Fantasy Live.
The L.A. native grew up in the Crenshaw district with his mother, father, both who were born and raised in Nigeria, and his 6 siblings. His first name means “great” in Arabic and his last name means “big man come save me”.
Akbar played football for San Diego State all 4 years while receiving his degree in communications & new media studies. He then played 5 years in the NFL as a linebacker & defensive end with the Oakland Raiders, San Diego Chargers, and Miami Dolphins before retiring in 2008.
Akbar is also the author of Everyone Can Be A Ninja, his first book, out this May!
Gbajabiamila currently serves as a board member for the Asomugha Foundation, an organization aimed at creating better educational opportunities for impoverished communities. Akbar also serves on the Board of the Michael J. Fox Foundation, which raises millions of dollars for Parkinson’s research. The cause is driven by the fact his own father was diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease in the late 1990’s.