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2021 NFL Draft Prospect Interview: Michael Brown, OG, West Virginia

Michael Brown was an offensive guard out of West Virginia who recently displayed his talents and enthusiasm at the 2021 Hula Bowl. He recently sat down with NFL Draft Diamonds writer Jimmy Williams.

Talk about your experience as a student. What is your major/minor? Did you participate in any other activities or campus organizations other than football?
After I served on a 2 year mission to the Philippines, I began playing football at Eastern Arizona Community College. After I graduated from there, I moved on to West Virginia to finish out my college career. I graduated in the Spring of 2020 with a degree in Multidisciplinary Studies. One of my favorite college courses was Child Development which I believe helped me with my missionary service.

What do your teammates say is your best quality?
I was voted most selfless player on the team. I’m a guy that can get along with anyone. I’m a hard worker and my positive attitude tends to rub off on people.

What kind of role do you see yourself in on the team? What scheme and/or position suits your skill set?
I can be a leader by example. Some people may not see me as a leader because I haven’t been playing for very long. So, I use that as fuel in my work ethic. My teammates see me doing things the way they should be done. I can pretty much play all over the offensive line. While I was in JUCO, I played offensive tackle. During my time here at WVU, I’ve started at both guard positions. I have not had the opportunity to play center, but I know I can learn it if I’m asked.

Who is the best player you have ever played against in college?
My teammate Darius Stills. We’ve been battling each other in practice ever since we first got together. Darius is fast, shifty and has a good set of moves. We’ve helped make each other better players.

Which one of your teammates impresses you the most?
A lot of teammates have impressed me. Both Darius and Dante Stills stand out. Dante is really good. He’s very strong and competitive. Chase Behardt is my dawg. Although we didn’t get along too well at first, he has definitely grown on me. When I first came in we were competing hard for a starting spot on the offensive line, and I definitely respect his work ethic. Chase has become one of my best friends.

Describe a time in your life when you were able to overcome a struggle.
One of the hardest things that I had to do was when I was on my mission. The language barrier troubled me every day. I prayed about it, and through patience I was able to eventually become fluent.

I believe my example of patience and endurance from my mission has really translated on the football field. When I encounter a challenge, I try to sit back and relax and remember all that I have been blessed with in college. In 2019, I was sick with a fever during a game against Missouri. I knew that I could pull through it. Coming back to practice after the loss, I remember having one-on-one drills with Darius. I could not breathe and had to stop. I ended up getting benched for two games. I remained patient and as the team started to rotate me back in I was able to make some big plays. I won Big 12 Player of the Week after our 2019 game against Texas Tech. After that, I maintained the starting job and started getting hit up by agents. I knew then that the NFL was going to be my next challenge in the near future.

If you didn’t play football, what other sport would you play?
I played track back in high school as a thrower. I was pretty good in the discus throwing for at least 160 feet.

What is something that you are most proud of? What would you say is your biggest achievement?
I’m most proud of how far I’ve come after only playing for 4 years, I was able to get my Associates degree and my Bachelors degree which I’m very proud of. Working my way up from JUCO, starting here at West Virginia, and being named to the 2020 All-Big 12 Second Team have been my biggest achievements.

Describe one of the most memorable plays of your collegiate career.
Our game against Oklahoma State this past season comes to mind. We needed a first down, and the play was an inside zone to the left. I smacked the defender back into the tackle. As I threw my whole body weight at the linebacker, Leddie jumped over me and was able to get the first down.

Leddie Brown made some great plays this past season going over the 1000 yard mark. He pulled off a 60 yard run against Kansas. I had pushed the nose tackle aside and continued down the field cutting off the linebacker which helped Leddie go for that long touchdown run.

Do you have a favorite athlete or professional team? Is there a player that you model your game after?
My favorite football team is the Dallas Cowboys. The guy that I model my game after is Larry Allen. I like watching his highlights on YouTube. We are both from Compton, CA and have similar football stories. So, I connect with him real well.

Who is your favorite music artist? What gets you pumped before a game?
My favorite artist is 50 Cent. One of his songs that I like to play before a game is called “If I Can’t”. The lyrics go, “If I can’t do it, it can’t be done.”

What is your favorite comfort food?
I was born in Compton, but both of my parents are from Samoa. There is a Samoan dish called Koko Laisa that is excellent. Everyone should try it.

Do you have a favorite movie, TV show or actor?
I like watching the Transformers movies and also like Mortal Kombat. My favorite TV show is Dragonball Z. Samuel L Jackson and Ryan Reynolds are among my favorite actors.

What do you do in your spare time? Do you have any hobbies? Any secret talents?
I love hanging out with my wife and 5 month old daughter. I also like playing video games like Halo, Gears of War and Mortal Kombat. I also like to draw. I took a drawing course in college, and I’m not that bad. I also love dancing. I was in a performance group called the Pacific Islanders Club.

Who or what motivates you the most?
Faith and Family. I have 7 siblings. My brothers are fairly big, and it was only a matter of time before we played football. My Dad motives me because he always wanted one of us to make it to the league. I hope to fulfill his dream here soon.

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