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Draft Diamonds Prospect Interview: Mike Coccia, OL, University of New Hampshire

mike coccia 2Every year, NFL Draft Diamonds brings our readers the best in depth interviews on the internet. We specialize in giving players an opportunity to showcase their talents on our website. We conducted interviews last year with over 300 plus players. We want you to enjoy our interviews, because when these young men are in the league, we will not be surprised, and neither should you. 

What is your name?

Mike Coccia

What is your Height/Weight?

6′ 2 3/4″

What is your position?

Center

Where do you play college football?

University of New Hampshire

How many teams were recruiting you out of high school?

I had a bunch of schools talking to me but i only had scholarship offers from University of New Hampshire, University of Maine, and Stony Brook University. 

How did you choose your school?

I committed on the last day of my official visit while I had my meeting with Coach Mac. It felt like one big family during my visit. 

Where are you from?

Bethlehem, Pennsylvania 

Who is your role model, and why?

My sister Kristina. She was also a division 1 athlete. She was a gymnast at the University of Denver. She had a very successful career and the adversity she had faced during her athletic career as a gymnast is unbelievable. She has taught me so much when it comes to adversity. 

Have any scouts met with you yet, and if so what are they saying?

Yes, I have met with scouts. They have said that they like the way I play hard physical football.

Did you play any other sports growing up?

In high school I also played basketball. When I was younger I wrestled and played baseball. 

Did you play any other positions in football?

In high school I had played center, guard, and Offensive tackle in my career. I also played defensive tackle and defensive end in high school. During my college career I played a little guard. I also long snap and short snap.

At your position, what separates you from others?

I would have to say my knowledge of the game. Knowing exactly what the defense is going to do during the pre-snap read makes the game a lot easier

When you are breaking down film, what do you look for?

Looking for tendencies. Knowing what players and schemes the defense likes do to in certain down and distance.

cocciaWho was the toughest player you ever faced?

Zach Kerr from the University of Delaware

If you could compare your play to one player in the NFL who would it be and why?

I would like to say Jason Kelce because he is an athletic and physical center

What was the biggest obstacle in your life you had to overcome, and how did you overcome it?

Having season ending shoulder surgery my junior season. I missed the last 9 games of the season. It was the first time in my entire athletic career that I ever missed a game. I had started 30 straight games before the surgery. My teammates were a big part of it. Just being around them and being able to travel to just about every game made the situation easier. They were always there for me. 

Do you have any pre-game rituals?

There isn’t one specific ritual I do, I just make sure every pre-game goes the same exact way. 

What is your biggest strength?

My knowledge of the game and taking pride in finishing every block

What is your biggest weakness?

Overall strength 

If I were a GM and gave you a second to sell yourself, what would you say?

I am a hard-worker that takes pride on playing the game hard and physical. 

Who was your favorite player and NFL team growing up?

Brian Dawkins, Philadelphia Eagles

If you could have dinner with three people dead or alive, who would you choose?

Denzel Washington, Brian Dawkins, Mark Wahlberg

NFL Draft Diamonds was created to assist the underdogs playing the sport. We call them diamonds in the rough. My name is Damond Talbot, I have worked extremely hard to help hundreds of small school players over the past several years, and will continue my mission. We have several contributors on this site, and if they contribute their name and contact will be in the piece above. You can email me at nfldraftdiamonds@gmail.com

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