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2020 NFL Draft Prospect Interview: Ricardo Toriz, DL, Briar Cliff University

Briar Cliff Defensive Lineman Ricardo Toriz recently sat down with NFL Draft Diamonds owner Damond Talbot
  • Name: Ricardo Toriz 
  • Height: 6’1 
  • Weight: 290lbs 
  • Position: Defensive Lineman 
  • College: Briar Cliff University 
  • Twitter: Toriz_thegod

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

• I come from a small town called Pico Rivera located in South-east Los Angeles area in California. One thing I love about my hometown is the strong Mexican culture that we have. Everywhere you go in my city the stores are family owned. It gives me inspiration to follow my dream. 

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

• Having said that Film Study would have to come first. The reason being is football is also a mental game. Being able to break down your opponent’s strengths, and weaknesses is a key factor. For me Strength and Conditioning comes second. Football is a physically demanding sport, so building your body is a huge factor.  Lastly Practice, after you build your mind and body to fit the requirements needed, you can put it all together and work on the field in a game like situation. 

What do you worry about, and why?

• One thing I worry about the most is being able to provide for my family in the future, they have done so much for me when it comes to putting me through college. The very least I can do is be able to make sure they are taken care of in the future.  

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

• One example of me failing was back in 2017 I was a competitive powerlifter I failed to deadlift past six hundred and fifty pounds. I felt extremely discouraged and did not want to show my face in the private gym I went to. So, what I did was trained on my own and built my lower and upper back to be as strong as I can get it. Along with my hamstrings, I trained until failure every day. Then one day I went back to my gym and was able to pull seven hundred and twenty pounds off the ground. What I learned was that sometimes you need to take a step back and focus on the little thing. 

What do your teammates say is your best quality?

• They say that it is how I motivate them, and my loyalty to them. My teammates say that my work ethic is “unmatched” I am willing to go beyond my limit just to show my teammates how far they can reach to get to the next level. There is never an excuse. Loyalty is something instilled into me as a kid growing up. I have my teammates back on the field and off the field no matter the situation. I am willing to put my body on the line for my team, and they know that.  

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

• I think it would have to be my now teammate Rob Robinson. Back in junior college I played against him both years, and all I can remember is seeing him in the back field every play. 

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

• It would probably go the route of teacher/coach in high school. I am an art major with an art history minor, so I will be able to teach and coach at the same time. Personally, being able to reach a high school student and show them that there is light at the end of every tunnel is something that puts a smile on my face. 

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

• I clean my room first, because it is the first thing you wake up to. It gives you a sense of accomplishment that motivates you throughout the day. Next, I move on to my desk. A clean space to work gives a clear mind, and not having to worry about finding anything. Last, I clean my car. Your car is an extension of you. People see your car before they see you, so having a clean car is a sign of self-respect.  

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 my family member just because of that. They are my family. It is like my teammates on the field. I have their back no matter what, and I will do anything in my power to help them. 

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

• I would have to go with Naruto, just because he is my favorite anime character. He starts off as a nobody and is alone in the world, but the rises to become one of the greatest leaders in the show. 

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

• My biggest adversity in life would have to be my mental health. A lot of athletes never talk about how they struggle to keep up with the workload. Especially in college. The day’s range from five in the morning for lifting, and end at twelve in the morning, sometimes one, and then waking up and doing it all over again. I found myself meditating and doing breathing techniques to calm myself and my mind. 

What is your most embarrassing moment?

• It would have to be when I was in middle school, and I was running to catch up with my aunt’s car, and I tripped and fell in front of everyone in the school. She still brings it up till this day. 

What was the most memorable play of your collegiate career?

• My most memorable play would have to be fourth and goal at Briar Cliff when we played Doane University. They tried to run up the middle and I was able to throw the center into the QB making him bounce out, then getting tackled by one of my teammates. 

What song best describes your work ethic?

• Victory Lap by Nipsey Hussle.  

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

• For me it would have to be mental strength. Not allowing myself to forget who I am and let it all boil up and go to my head. Mental strength is something that helps in all aspects in life, you either get it right or you take the loss and learn from it to get better. 

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

• It would have to be my grandfather. The only reason is to just show him how far I have come after he passed, and to let him know that he can rest peacefully, knowing that I picked up where he left off. 

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

• “The Bull Pin, just because my teammates call me Bull and it has a nice ring to it. 

Who is the most underrated player in the NFL?

• Ndamukong Suh, he is just a beast, he holds down the middle on the defensive line, and can even line up as an end. He causes so much mayhem in the backfield every time. 

Would you rather be liked or respected, and why?

• I would rather be respected. Simply because not everyone is going to like you every time you meet someone new or play against someone. Being respected will make the people that do not like you and see the qualities of why other people do like you. 

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

• I do not really feel for any, the reason being is that they made that choice, to do what they did, unless they were faultily accused, or sustained in a career ending injury. Players are under contract for a reason the choices they make are their own.  

Do you love to win, or hate to lose? 

• I love to win just because there is no better feeling then winning but losing is something everyone can learn from. Losing shows what the team or an individual need to work on so they can grow and get better. 

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

• My older brother, he has been dealt a bad hand so many times at life, and he kept pushing no matter what. He found a way to make good out of every situation he was in and overcame it.  

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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