From age 9 to age 16, he grew up in Mannheim, Germany on a US Army base, where his father, Major Gene Strahan, was stationed.
His father was a boxer with a 1-1 record against future heavyweight boxing champion Ken Norton.
His mother, Louise Strahan, was a basketball coach.
Michael’s uncle is retired pro football player Arthur Strahan.
Michael was not able to play US high school football until he was a high school senior at Westbury High School in Houston, Texas. However, he was able to play organized football as a linebacker for the Mannheim (Germany) Redskins in 1985, mostly made up of other military brats from the nearby US Army base where his father was stationed.
In order to get US high school football experience, his father sent him to live with his brother Art Strahan (Michael’s uncle) in Houston, Texas, USA, the summer before his senior year.