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NFL Draft Diamonds Prospect Interview: Maurquice Shakir, OL, Middle Tennessee State University

Maurquice Shakir is the anchor for the MTSU offensive line.

NFL Draft Diamonds website has been providing our readers Prospect Interviews over the past 3 years and this year we mixed things up a bit. Our questions are designed to give our readers a little more insight on the draft eligible player. We hope to bring you more than 350 interviews of NFL Draft Prospects this season. You will be able to track them all on the front page of our website in the banner to the right.  Now let’s meet our next prospect!!!!

What is your name?

Maurquice Shakir

What is your Height/Weight?

6’4 314lbs

What is your position?

Center, Guard (played tackle in college)

Where do you play college football?

Middle Tennessee State Univ

Football is about giving back, what is the coolest thing you have done off the field?

When I lived in LA I used to volunteer at the Primetime Junior sports camp and help with kids with disabilities during the summer.

What was the hardest college class you ever had to take?

The hardest class I’ve taken was a history class in JUCO. By far the toughest class I’ve ever encountered and the professor was relentless with the assignments. But at MTSU I’ve had some tough communication classes but nothing I couldn’t handle.

Where are you from?

Los Angeles, CA

Who is your role model, and why?

My father. He taught me everything I know and how to be a man. I am forever blessed to have him apart of my life.

Did you play any other sports growing up?

I played basketball growing up and played a little baseball and did track for a year or so but it was mainly football and basketball.

Did you play any other positions in football?

I’ve played defensive tackle, center, guard, and tackle in high school, guard and tackle in JUCO.

At your position, what separates you from others?

I believe my communication and my feet separates me from others because I am agile and I feel like I can compete with anyone at any position. I love the idea of everyone on the line being on the same page when we see things pre-snap at the line of scrimmage.

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

I look for a few things like who am I gonna see throughout a game and how they react to certain blocks or looks that I would give them in a game. I look at their tendencies throughout a game basically how they respond to big plays such as are they tired do they have bad body language or if they took on a big block how do they come the next play. Really critical when I watch film and I believe that helped me a lot my senior season. I feel like my coaches instilled that in me when I watch film to really pay attention to someone’s body language and their field positioning because they can sometimes tip a blitz or a slant of some sort.

Who was the toughest player you ever faced?

The toughest player I’ve ever faced was A’Shawn Robinson from Alabama my junior year. He was really sound and had great technique for a DT.

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

I would compare myself to Kyle Long. He’s always been a favorite offensive lineman of mine. He is very vocal and he shows how versatile he is by playing multiple positions and adjusting under adversity.

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

The biggest obstacle I’ve had in my life was when my parents separated and my mother was in jail for an incident she had with my father under the influence of alcohol. I had to take over a lot of responsibilities in the house while my father was also working so that involved me taking my brother and sister to school and making it to class on time myself, going to practice and making it back home to my brother and sister in time to cook and do a bunch of things I wasn’t really prepared to do so suddenly. I overcame these challenges with the faith in God and the help from my siblings and knowing my mother would be home before the holidays was just motivation on not to quit and to stay strong for my younger siblings. By far the hardest obstacle I dealt with and I’m grateful that my parents are healthy and are big part on where I am in life now.

Do you have any pre-game rituals?

My pregame rituals are to wake up focused. Not letting anything or anyone get me out the zone I’m in and to stay hydrated. Eat a banana, and a granola bar before I get off the bus. As we arrive to the stadium I do the same warm up and stretching routine and all of my first steps of the blocks I would be making during the game. Something I’ve done all season long. But importantly just staying focused.

What is your biggest strength?

My biggest strength is being mentally prepared. Knowing what I’m up against and defeating it with my technique. I used to feel nervous before entering a game but this past season I felt like I mentally prepared myself all week long and when that first whistle blew I knew I was ready and didn’t feel nervous at all. More confident than anything.

What is your biggest weakness?

I believe my biggest weakness is when I feel like my team isn’t playing well I need to do everything in my power to make sure that something changes and that always doesn’t happen and at times I can feel like I’m failing myself.

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

I will do anything to make this team better. I am a winner and I will do anything to help this team win.

Who was your favorite player and/or NFL team growing up?

My favorite team growing up was the Chicago bears because that was the team I had won a championship with playing pop warner football.

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

I’d have dinner with Tupac, Kobe Bryant, and Phil Jackson.

What will be the first big item you buy once you are in the NFL?

The first big item I buy will be a house for my mom!

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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