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2020 NFL Draft Prospect Interview: Martaveous Holliday, RB, University of La Verne

Martaveous Holliday the RB from University of La Verne recently sat down with NFL Draft Diamonds owner Damond Talbot
  • Name: Martaveous Holliday 
  • Height: 5’11
  • Weight: 190lbs 
  • Position: Running back/ Kick returner 
  • College: University of La Verne 
  • Twitter: @Martaveous_h 

Tell us about your hometown, and what you love most about it?

  • I was raised by my Grandma in Aberdeen, a small town in Mississippi, until I was 7 years old. Once my mom became a registered nurse, I moved to Gardena, California to be with her. What I love most about Gardena is the diversity and sense of community. There is a lot of support and understanding from everyone around you.  

List these three in order of importance and why: Film Study, Strength and Conditioning and Practice?

  • Strength and conditioning is the most important to improve as a player. You can watch 30 hours of film a week and study another team but if you are not in shape to compete with your opponent, you won’t succeed. Practice is right behind strength and conditioning in terms of importance. You have to be able to execute on the field. Practice helps with the fundamentals of football like catching the ball, reading blocks, knowing all your plays and being able to compete with confidence. Film might be last on this list but not because it’s not important. Film helps you visualize your opponent and see what weaknesses and strengths they have. I make sure when I’m watching film to pay attention to myself also, I focus on all the little things. I might check if I stayed tight to my blocker on a run play or if I could have made a better move on a defender to gain an extra yard. 

What do you worry about, and why?

  • Life after being a student athlete is a big transition. Especially for football players. A lot of people don’t talk about the identity struggle that many former players face when their athletic careers come to an end. Having 5 a.m. weights, position meetings, film, practice and games become a thing of the past is tough because it’s been a part of my life and daily routine for as long as I’ve known. 

Give me an example of when you failed at something. How did you react and how did you overcome failure?

  • I failed my red shirt sophomore year of college when I was ineligible to play a second season at Santa Monica College, because I did not take enough units to play the next season. Me making that mistake lead me to lose every division 1 offer that I had on the table . After being ineligible I was only able to be a preferred walk on to certain D1 colleges. I overcame this failure by understanding that everything happens for a reason. I knew that I could still be successful regardless of what division I decided to play in. I wanted to stay close to home so I chose to attend the University of La verne. I chose this school because of the small class rooms and because they were a run heavy football team. 

What do your teammates say is your best quality?

  • My teammates would say my best quality is being a good person on and off the field. I am a natural leader by action. I can do anything that is asked of me on the field, because of the skill set I developed over the years of playing and training I am very versatile. 

Who is the best player you have ever played against in college?

  • Torry Mctyer is the best player I have played against in college. He went to cathedral high school with me, afterTorry graduated he attended UNLV. I was a class under him, so when I graduated I also attended UNLV. My red shirt year I was on scout team and he was on the starting defense. He is now in the NFL, he played for the Dolphins and is currently on the Cincinnati Bengals. 

What would your career be if you couldn’t play football? 

  • I possibly would have went to fire academy and became a firman right out of high school. I have a love for fashion also so I possibly would have pursued fashion design. I have my own street fashion brand called  Lamar Lèon which is doing pretty well. FIDM is a fashion design school in Downtown LA. The school is about 25 minutes from my hometown so I possibly would have went there. 

Room, desk and car – which do you clean first?

  • My room has to be cleaned first because that is the place you start your day off at. I always make up my bed in the morning to get my day started. Making my bed makes me feel more organized and ready to go for the day. I believe when you start your day off right it will usually be a good day. 

If there was a disaster and you could either save three strangers or one family member, which would you choose and why?

  • I would save my one family member because that’s who I know has my back. I can save those strangers and they can turn their back on me at any point. 

If you could be any television or movie character, who would you be and why?

  • I would be Malfoy from Harry Potter. I think the Slytherin house is misunderstood  in the film. I would want to change the way they are portrayed. 

Tell me about your biggest adversity in life and how you’ve dealt with or overcome it?

  • Not being able to play football my sophomore year of college. I lost all of my scholarship offers. I dealt with it by grinding harder and doing my best to stay in shape. I knew no matter where I played at that I needed to finish what I started and give it my all and I did that. 

What is your most embarrassing moment?

  • I can’t really recall a time I was overly embarrassed. I am an easy going person. Whenever I make a mistake I usually play it off or laugh with everyone else, that usually saves the embarrassing aspect. 

What was the most memorable play of your collegiate career?

  • We were playing against Whittier College  for homecoming this past 2019 season and the score was 43-30 with about 3 mins left in the game . I ran for a 56 yard touchdown to end that game officially and we won that game 50-30. 

What song best describes your work ethic?

  • That’s how I knew by Nipsey Hussle He talks about manifesting a successful life in the song and that is something I strongly believe in. 

What is the most important trait you can have (Physical or Non-Physical) to help you succeed at the next level? 

  • Being flexible and being able to move fast is a great trait to have when you are playing on any professional level. The two traits are the most important because it allows you to play well and prevent injury. 

If you could bring one person back from the dead for one day, who would it be and why?

  • I would bring back Nipsey Hussle from the dead. Nipsey had a huge impact in the Los Angeles district when he was alive. Hussle’s  message spread across nationally when he passed away. I would want to know how he feels about the impact he left here. 

If you were to open a dance club, what would you name it? 

  • The Holliday, people always say I have a cool last name. I also think I could have a lot of good slogans for marketing using my last name. 

Who is the most underrated player in the NFL? 

  • Alvin Kamara is the most underrated player in the NFL. Alvin is a dynamic running back, he has great vision and he is able to catch the ball like a receiver out of the backfield. Kamara makes big plays every game but he is never in the conversation of one of the best backs in the NFL, and he should be. 

Would you rather be liked or respected, and why?

  • Respect is always more important than being liked. People can like you but still not treat you how they would like to be treated.if someone respects you they will always treat you with dignity. 

What player who had his career derailed by off-field issues do you feel for the most and why?

  • Johnny Manziel, Manziel had a fast rise to stardom with being Texas A&M Heisman winner. He got a lot of popularity from playing so well and started partying a lot with big celebrities. He made bad decisions before he was mature enough to get his priorities together, by the time he did mature his football career was already too far down the drain. I hope he still gets another chance in the XFL. 

Do you love to win, or hate to lose?

  • I hate to lose, I am very competitive even with the smallest things. I play in a recreational basketball league with my family and we all play hard. We do not like losing. 

Who has been the biggest influence on your life and explain why?

  • My Mom has had the biggest influence on my life from a business stand point. I want to be successful in whatever work field I am in. I want to make enough money so I could possibly start my own businesses and become a mogul like my mother. 

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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