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2020 NFL Draft Prospect Interview: Maxwell Praschak, LB, University of Wisconsin River Falls

Maxwell Praschak the All-Amercian LB from the University of Wisconsin River Falls recently sat down with NFL Draft Diamonds owner Damond Talbot.
  • Name: Maxwell Praschak 
  • Height: 6′ 2″
  • Weight: 215
  • Position: LB
  • College: University Wisconsin River Falls 
  • Twitter: @maxdp2929

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

• I’m from a small town in western Wisconsin called Somerset. If you’ve heard of it, that’s probably because of the river tubing. I love the small town feel of our town and the people I’ve gotten to know in it.

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

• Film study, strength and conditioning, practice.
Film study first because anyone in the world can make a play if they are in the right spot. You learn where to be from watching film. You can learn almost everything about an opponent from film study.
Strength and condition allows you to make those plays from anywhere on the field. This game is played with some of the most fine tuned people on the earth and if you aren’t matching their abilities or increasing your own, you will be left behind.
Practice is still important because it allows you to try what you learned and developed in the first two fascits. It also allows you to see things with your own eyes in real time. This allows you to see new things to try or raise questions about ideas you had from film study.

What do you worry about, and why?

• I try not to worry about much in life, because if you work hard enough and do things right life will work itself out. There are some things out of your control. I guess if I had to choose one thing it would be, being able to provide for my family the opportunities my family has given me. I just feel like it is your duty as a father and husband to give your family the most opportunities you can. 

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

• The one memory that comes to mind was my freshmen year wrestling in high school. I had a very subpar record that year. I honestly felt I had failed. But having two older brothers that also played sports that uswd beat up on me when I was younger, you understand that there is no running from it. Unless I get better, bigger, faster, I’m going to get my butt kicked every day. I don’t see failure as a bad thing as long as it’s something one can learn from. No one person is gonna be perfect at anything in life. And if you want to be good at something it takes work.

What do your teammates say is your best quality?

• I don’t really ask about myself with my teammates but I would have to say probably my drive. I love working hard because it feels comfortable. On the field I like to show what a good example of “drive” is, because people feed off things like that, and if that’s what someone needs to play well I’ll give it to them.

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

• When I was a scout team player at University Wisconsin Madison, I had to go up against Ryan Ramczyk. He plays for the Saints now and may be one of the most athletic people I’ve met and he used all of it against me.

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

• I plan on being a teacher when I finish my degree. It would be a great opportunity to get into coaching and give me an easy path to give back to the communities that gave me so much.

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

• I clean my desk, because that desk isn’t mine. Someone pays me to be there and represent them. If I am not representing someone well that is gifting me with an opportunity like a job, I’m not living be ideals that I claim to live by.

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

• I would have to save the one family member because no one should turn away help from a family member. You have a bond that very few people in the world can replace.

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

• I would love to be James Bond. The spy life fascinates me. He poise during stressful situations is unmatched by anyone. Uses his entire arsenal to his advantage.

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

• One adversity that seems to always come up is my weight. Being a MLB, not many are under 225 lbs. I heard this and accepted the challenge and understood that I would have to bring something extra to make up for my smaller size. These extra things were physicality, drive and smarts. Thses three things allow me to get past my smaller size and compete at the same level as those with a suppose more suited body style.

What is your most embarrassing moment?

• In 5th grade I was beaten by a girl in an arm wrestling contest. 

What was the most memorable play of your collegiate career?

• My most memorable play would have to be this year against Wisconsin WhiteWater. I intercepted the ball and returned it for a touchdown. It not only was a great play it allowed us to stay in a game that they were on the verge of sealing.

What song best describes your work ethic?

• Can’t Stop, by the Red Hot Chili Peppers.

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

• For me intelligence l, because the game has become less who can hot the hardest but who is the most intelligent. With this intelligence a player can set himself up to make a multitude of plays. It allows them to be where they need to be. If you don’t understand what is going on you are at a disadvantage than everyone else on the field.

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

• I would bring back my grandfather. He was a remarkable man. He had more knowledge than he would ever be able to teach me. He set a example of what it ment to work hard in life. He loved to watch me play and I loved to spend time learning with him.

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

• I would call it the sandbar. Have it on the beach use the beach as extra space.

Who is the most underrated player in the NFL? 

• Joe Schoebert. I actually played with him at Madison. He plays for the Cleveland Browns. A outstanding linebacker very intelligent and athletic. Never seems to get his recognition he deserves.

Would you rather be liked or respected, and why?

• I would much rather be respected. Those who respect you understand who you are. Not everyone in this world is going to like you and you may have to sacrifice some.of your own ideals to please these people. Respect is one of the most valuable things in life. 

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

• We had a player on our team that had multiple issues with money and mental health. He had all the talent in the world and was setting himself up to have a great career. He kept almost everything to himself and tried to deal with many of these things by himself when he didn’t need to. He had family and teammates that would do anything for him and had gone through similar situations. A great player and a even better person.

Do you love to win, or hate to lose?

• I love to win. That is only because there are some cases where you leave everything you have in you as well as all of your teammates. With this effort and the cards still don’t fall in your favor you have to tip your hat to those across from you. Losing sucks don’t get me wrong can give you some of the worst feelings ever. One has to lose to understand how good winning feels.

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

• I would have to say my father. My father is a very hard working man, sometimes too hard working when it comes to his health. He instilled very strong ideals about being a man. I try to live up to his expectation in everything I do. He did things right, worked hard in life and every turned out alright for him. He gives me something to shoot for in 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

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