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NFL Draft Diamonds Prospect Interview: Sherrod Ruff, LB, University of Southern Mississippi

Sherrod Ruff of Southern Miss took time out of his busy schedule to sit down with NFL Draft Diamonds reporter Jonathan Joyce.

Player Profile:

  • Sherrod Ruff 
  • University of Southern Mississippi 
  • LB 
  • 5’10” 
  • 215lbs. 
  • Cordele, GA 
  • Twitter: @_RuFF37_ 

2018 Accolades & Statistics:

  • 2018 C-USA Football All-Conference Honorable Mention. 
  • GP: 11 
  • Total Tackles: 37 
  • TFL: 11.5 
  • Sacks: 5.5 
  • FF: 1 

What is your favorite song to listen to prior to competing?

J. Cole – Too Deep for the Intro.

How would your teammates describe you as both a player and person?

As a player I would say vocal leader and easy going person.

How do you and your teammates make practice and film study fun?

During practice, competing is fun enough for us being a part of a top defense in the nation. In film study we would joke around at appropriate times to lighten the mood sometimes.

When you are studying film, what is your main focus to gain a competitive advantage?

As a linebacker, I think one of my main focuses is to study tendencies of the offensive line and quarterback. That’s huge during games because no matter how many times they audible a play, their body language and small tendencies will tell me everything.

For what in your life do you feel most grateful?

I’m definitely most grateful for my family and support they show me in everything that I do.

If you could wake up tomorrow having gained one quality or ability, what would it be?

Honestly, I’m blessed and God has equipped me with everything I need to be successful.

What do you value most from your Collegiate experience?

I value the relationships I’ve gained along the way with everyone i have met. From my brothers to coahes and fans it’s something that I will value for a lifetime.

Who is your personal hero?

My personal hero is my mom. She is the true definition of a superwoman to me. From being a single mother and a breast cancer survivor, she will always be my hero.

Tell me something about yourself nobody would know.

I’ve always wanted to be a classical musician.

How do you work on yourself?

I work on myself by trying to detail everything I do from life to football. The small things count and correcting them will take you a long way.

If you could have dinner with anyone in the world, whom would it be and why?

J. Cole. Ever since I started listening to his music in high school, it has inspired me on so many levels. The guy is really a lyrical genius and an iconic role model in the young community today.

If you could have any superpower, what power would it be and why?

I would want the ability to heal sickness and pain. Watching a lot of people around you go through so much in life, makes you want to do something about it.

What would constitute a perfect day for you?

I would start out waking up early and getting a little word from my Bible. Then get a good breakfast in me while watching some film. I would get a workout in later that day. Lastly, end that day by getting on the phone and talking to my family, checking in with my close relatives.

Who inspired you as a young athlete?

Growing up as a young safety, Ed Reed was always a guy that I tried to model my game after.

What are the positive attributes that you bring to a professional football team?

Starting with good character, doing the right things at all times on and off the field. Representing the team in a good manner. Leadership is another attribute, trying my best to guide as a linebacker. Lastly, being devoted to the team’s success. Striving for the best in everything we do.

Tell me about a time where you overcame a challenge.

I broke my wrist my senior year of college football, the 4th game of the season. It turned out to be a season-ending injury that really upset me. I learned I had a redshirt season available because I only did one year of Junior College, which was a little relief but at that point I really was over football since I had already graduated. However, I just continued to pray about the situation and eventually I started rehabbing after surgery. I finally made up my mind to give it another try and it turned out to be one of the best decisions I have ever made, that I will never regret doing.

What one skill would you like to improve on? What’s your plan for doing so?

Being more patient with everything I do. I’m going to really take my time and think about every little detail when I do things, being mindful of every moment.

What is the best part of your hometown; Cordele, GA?

It’s a town with hard-working people. It’s kind of country-living so it pays off when you’re a young kid to get everything you work hard for.

Give me your pitch to an NFL GM on why you should be a part of their organization, in 15 words or less.

I’ve learned that hard work takes you a long way but character takes you further.

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