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2021 NFL Draft Prospect Interview: Seyoum Settepani, OL, Richmond

Seyoum Settepani is a very physical leader on the Richmond Spider’s offensive line. He recently told his story to Draft Diamonds writer Jimmy Williams.
  • Name: Seyoum Settepani
  • Height: 6’3”
  • Weight: 300 lbs
  • Position: OG
  • College: University of Richmond
  • Twitter: @SettepaniSeyoum

Tell us about your university/college. What is your major/minor? Did you participate in any other activities or campus organizations other than football?

The University of Richmond was the first school to offer me a full scholarship. Choosing the University of Richmond was a no brainer, it was a perfect blend with academics and athletics. Richmond invests a lot in their student-athletes with top facilities and a high level of academic support. I majored in Political Science with a minor in Entrepreneurship. I was also part of the Entrepreneurship Club at Richmond.

What do your teammates say is your best quality?

I believe that my teammates would say that my leadership skills are some of my best qualities. I try to set an example in everything I do and I would never ask of my teammates something that I haven’t done or I don’t think they are capable of doing.

What kind of role do you see yourself in on the team? What scheme and/or position suits your skill set?

I am versatile, being able to do all interior positions. I believe that I have great lateral speed as well as physical strength that contributes to me being reach well in a zone scheme as well as getting vertical movement in power schemes.

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

Bill Murray, a defensive lineman from William and Mary College was the most challenging opponent. Bill is a very physically strong player that did a great job at anchoring down on double teams and getting vertical penetration on pass plays.

Which one of your teammates impresses you the most?

Clayton McConnell is one of the best football players I have ever played with. Clayton plays center for Richmond. He has a high football IQ as well as great communication skills and athletic ability.  Clayton has a great ability to take control of the offensive line and make sure everyone is on the same page.

Describe a time in your life when you were able to overcome a struggle.

Just recently during the beginning of the pandemic, my family had to shut down operations for our family business, and at the same time my mother was starting her cancer treatments. It was hard for me to see them struggling like that while being home. My whole life, my parents have been workaholics and them being out of work was hard for the whole family. I’ve been keeping my motivation to train in my NYC apartment while helping out physically and financially any spare chance I could.

If you didn’t play football, what other sport would you play?

I would probably be wrestling or be playing lacrosse. I was a three-sport athlete in high school and loved wrestling because it is such a mentally and physically demanding sport. I always felt challenged by going to wrestling practice. I picked up lacrosse my freshman year and loved it because of the similar sense of camaraderie and brotherhood that it shares with football.

Check out NFL Draft Diamonds 2021 Small School Rankings

What is something that you are most proud of? What would you say is your biggest achievement?

I am very proud of being a two-time captain at Richmond. I love my teammates, and for them to vote for me to represent them in everything I do is an honor. Winning the Gus Lee Winter Warrior Award is one of my biggest achievements at Richmond. One of my former teammates and close friends Gus Lee passed away after my junior season. In his honor, Coach Huesman named the Winter Warrior Award after him, and winning that was very emotional for me because of the impact that he had on my life. I dedicated that offseason to him and wanted to make him proud.

Describe one of the most memorable plays of your collegiate career.

One of the most memorable plays of my collegiate career was running outside zone against Delaware. Tim Coleman and I did a great job at reaching defenders and climbing to the second-level defenders.

Do you have a favorite athlete or professional team? Is there a player that you model your game after?

My favorite athlete is Mike Tyson. He is one of the most technical and strategic boxers. I love watching videos of him preparing for fights and how intense he was when fighting. He had a singular focus and determination. That is the same mentality that I try to instill in my game week preparations.

Elgton Jenkins is a player that I have been studying recently because of how dominating he is for the Packers. He is extremely athletic and physical out of his stance. I admire the way Elgton moves in space and that is something that I am trying to develop in my game.

Who is your favorite music artist? What gets you pumped before a game?

I don’t have a favorite musical artist, I love music and I don’t think I would be able to choose one. Depending on how I feel, different artists can be more attractive to me. However, on game day, I can count on Pop Smoke to help me get into the zone.

What is your favorite comfort food?

I come from a mixed background with both parents being immigrants. My mother is from Ethiopia, and my father is from Italy. My version of comfort food is traditional Ethiopian food. The food is delicious and the setting is always enjoyable because it is eaten communally, and I cherish eating it with friends or family. The comfort is the food itself and the community it creates.

Do you have a favorite movie or actor?

Keanu Reeves is my favorite actor, and I enjoy his John Wick movies because action and stunts seem very clever and diverse. As an actor, he holds an otherwise crazy movie together.

What do you do in your spare time? Do you have any hobbies? Any secret talents?

In my spare time, I like to spend time with my teammates.  I also enjoy building houses with one of my friend’s dad. I also enjoy playing Call of Duty with my friends.

Who or what motivates you the most?

My parents motivate me the most because of how much they have sacrificed for me to be in the place that I am today. One day in the near future I want to be able to take care of them so that they can live comfortably. 

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