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2020 NFL Draft Prospect Interview: Jack Pilkerton, TE, Kutztown University

Jack Pilkerton the big TE from Kutztown University recently sat down with Jimmy Williams of Draft Diamonds.
  • Name: Jack Pilkerton
  • Height: 6’3”
  • Weight: 240
  • Position: TE
  • College: Kutztown University
  • Twitter: @jbpilk

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

La Plata is located in Southern Maryland. There are great places to have fun outdoors. Being near the water, I am able to fish, go water skiing, go tubing, or just hang out on a boat. La Plata is close to Washington, D.C. and Annapolis. It’s great to live near big cities. What I love most is the people.

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

1. Practice
2. Film
3. Strength and Conditioning

Practice is most important to me because that’s the best place to improve your craft.  You are able to fix any issues in your game that may come up during the season.  Coaches and teammates are right there to share their ideas and immediately put those ideas into action.  Film is also very important, learning what your opponent does in certain situations is key to playing fast. Finally, S&C – working out hard helps a player get and stay in good condition.

How did you react and how did you overcome failure?

Unfortunately, failure is sometimes inevitable.  When I do fail I treat it as a lesson and try to learn from it.  Learning from the situation helps prevent the failure from happening again.  

What do your teammates say is your best quality?

I think my teammates would say my best quality is executing the play – coming up big for the team when we need someone to make a play.  I made two game- winning TDs this season and a number of 3rd and 4th down conversions.

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

Even if I can’t play football, I love the game so much that I would still need to be part of the game.  I would try to work for the player personnel department of an NFL team.  If that didn’t work out, I would try to do the same for an MLB team.

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

Room

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

Family – family always comes first. 

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

Superman, he has all the superpowers anyone could ask for. 

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

At JuCo I had to play DE just to get game film. I knew in my heart that I was a tight end.  I played hard as a DE, trying to be an asset to my team but I did not want to give up on being a TE. Since I was only going to play one year for a junior college, I was afraid I would not have enough film to send to four-year colleges.  I sent out all my film in hopes a school would take me at TE. I received some looks on the defensive side and only a handful at TE.  

What was the most memorable play of your collegiate career?

Kutztown played Tiffin in the playoffs. I caught the game winning touchdown with 44 seconds left in the game.  It was my second touchdown of the day. After losing in the first round of the playoffs the previous year, it felt so good putting my team in front. 

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

I bring a lot to the table as a player and teammate, but I think my versatility is my most important trait.  I am able to line up on the line, out wide, in the slot, and in the back field. This allows me to run routes from four different places and allows me to block from different positions too.   

Who is the most underrated player in the NFL? 

The most underrated player in the NFL is Taysom Hill for the Saints. His versatility keeps the opponent guessing and makes him a valuable member of the team.  

Would you rather be liked or respected, and why?

I think being respected is more important than being liked.  When a person is respected, he has important traits that others value.  If I concern myself with the value I bring to a relationship or situation, I am concentrating on making myself better. 

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

Josh Gordon, he is so talented and I would have liked to see what his career would have looked like without the issues.  I think it is a shame when someone has a great talent but personal demons hinder him from using that talent in the greatest arena.

Do you love to win, or hate to lose?

I hate to lose.  It takes a long time to get over a loss.  

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

My mother has taught me how to be a kind, hard-working person and has helped me in all walks of life.  

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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