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Draft Diamonds Free Agent Interview: Ian Berryman, Punter

Ian Berryman
Former Steelers punter Ian Berryman recently sat down with NFL Draft Diamonds writer Justin Berendzen.

Hello, I am @jrberendzen on Twitter and this is one of my free agent interviews where I ask very deserving free agents questions about the players themselves and about what a team would get in these players. All of these players should get picked up by NFL and CFL teams and get a shot at being a career football player. So I hope you all read this interview of Ian and follow his journey on Twitter @iancberryman

1.What are your favorite moments from your football life?

I have a few favorite moments from my football life that stand out the most. The first punts from my college and pro careers come to mind. In my first career college start back in 2015 against Mars Hill, I hit a 49 yard (4.5+ hang time) directional right punt from our own 34 yard line right on the sideline and the returner had to walk it out of bounds inside the 20. My first punt of the preseason with Pittsburgh also stands out, ironically from our own 34 yard line again. Hit a 66 yard  (5.0+ hang time) ball for a touchback, the ball traveled 70+ yards in the air. Another moment that stands out is my touchdown pass on a fake field goal in college against Mercer in 2018. 

2.What is your favorite stadium that you have played in?

Either Aloha Stadium in Honolulu or Texas A&M’s stadium in College Station.  

3.What is your mindset when you are on the football field?

Being a specialist, I try to stay as relaxed and loose as possible on the sideline. On the football field, however, I am extremely focused and serious. 

4.Rank focus,skill and detail based on what is most important to you as a football player and explain why?

1) Detail: Being a punter is extremely detail oriented and I have to grind at the details the most to be as successful as I can be. 2) Skill: Have to have the skill to be able to get the shot. I have always had a bit of an unorthodox swing and relied on my natural skill and leg speed to make me successful. 3) Focus: Focus is as important as the first two, but I have always been a very “go with the flow” kind of guy and have learned when to turn my focus on and off to try and keep the sport fun for me. 

5.What has been your biggest challenge in life?

My biggest challenge was probably going to Western Carolina as a true walk-on and working my way all the way up to a full scholarship. One of my biggest challenges but also one of my biggest successes.  

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6.What do you hope to achieve as a football player going forward?

I want to be able to help whatever team I play with win football games.  

7.What do you do for fun?

I’m a huge golfer. Golf has turned into a hobby for me and I enjoy playing to get away from the grind of football. 

8.What made you decide you wanted to be a football player?

I had some friends back in Middle School who talked me into coming out to the football team to be the team’s Kicker (was the only way my mom would let me play). Little did I know I would end up playing quarterback mostly through middle/high school and not come back to punting full time until my senior year of high school. 

9.What type of energy do you bring onto the football field?

I have always been a high energy guy on the football field. I try to be super encouraging to my teammates as well. 

10.What would a team get in a player like you?

Any team who takes a chance on me will get a guy who puts the team first, helps the team win football games, and gives it his all.   

11.What is your favorite workout?

Any type of explosive lift: Box jumps, deadlifts, high-pulls, etc .

12.If your life was a tv show what would you call it and why?

Peaks and Valleys because it would show how I handled all of the peaks and valleys I’ve been put through in my 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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