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2022 NFL Draft Prospect Interview: Balewa Byrd, WR, Morehead State University

Balewa Byrd the standout wide receiver from Morehead State University recently sat down with NFL Draft Diamonds owner Damond Talbot.
  • Name:  Balewa Byrd -Nickname BJ
  • Position: WR/ KR
  • College: Morehead State University
  • Height: 5”10
  • Weight: 186
  • Twitter: bjbyrd_
  • Instagram: Lil_beejay4hunnin

What makes you a top prospect at your position in the 2022 NFL Draft? 

  • As a top prospect at my position, I possess a break away speed to get open. With that, I am also a versatile player, who catches contested passes. As a recognized leader in FCS with receptions, reception yards, touchdowns and 100-yard games, I have exceptional production on the field. Off the field, I feel that my mindset and temperament are different, in that I am humble and always willing to learn.

At what age were you first interested in the sport of football?

  • I started playing football at about 6 years old. As a child, I was already fairly athletic and played baseball. My late uncle encouraged my mom to let me play football and it’s been history ever since.  

What is one thing that NFL teams should know about you?

  • I would want any NFL team to know that I have a lot of drive. I work hard for everything I have and respect. I do not give up, nor quit easily no matter what the circumstances are.

If you could donate to one cause in the world, what would it be? 

  • I would love to focus on the Make a Wish Foundation. During my coursework in college, I researched the organization and understand their impact on youth and giving them inspiration and hope during what could be a tough time in their life. I want to create those smiles and happy moments as well. 

What is the best advice you have ever received? 

  • “You have to work for what you want, nothing is ever handed to you“ I tend to get this from my parents they tell me this all the time on a daily day base and it refers to everything in life not just football.

Who was your childhood hero? 

  • Spiderman is my favorite childhood hero.  I would say Spider-Man because he always saved people’s life and went down the right path doing the right thing. So I feel like me and him are very compatible. Also I always thought I could fly just like him.

Who is the most underrated teammate in your locker room at your school? 

  • Ryan Rupp, Rupp is very underrated as a player, likely due to his size. He is very fast and good with his feet. His work ethic in practice is commendable and he dominates every rep. I look forward to seeing him shine in the future. 
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What is your biggest pet peeve? 

  • My biggest pet peeve is being around someone who is pessimistic or negative in tone. I believe you should celebrate the wins.

Overcoming adversity is what defines character, what was the hardest moment in your life to overcome? 

  • The hardest moment for me was when my program at Jacksonville University closed after  just one semester. I felt as if my dream of playing football at the collegiate level was tested in that situation. Within two weeks, I had to determine a program that was a good fit for me, work with my family to discuss schools and make the move. Although difficult to manage, I overcame it by finding a new football home.

Tell me something about your school and why it is so special to you?

  • Due to the location of Morehead State University, there was just football and school. It was a very rural area. This did not allow me, nor my teammates to have distractions from our main role as student athletes.

What is your favorite snack food? 

  • My favorite “go to” snack is a “PBJ”, a peanut butter and jelly sandwich.

What is the best part of football? 

  • The best part of football for me is getting on the field and delivering my expectations each week. Also, I have the opportunity to do something that only 1% of the world does at the same level.

If you could sell yourself in one sentence what would you say? 

  • Balewa “BJ” Byrd is an exceptional leader both on the field and off the field, producing record stats for the FCS this season, earning a ESPN sticker and being nominated for the Walter Payton Award.

If you could compare your play to one player in the NFL who would it be? 

  • I would compare my play and my physical build to Julian Edelman. Edelman helped shape me into a better player by watching and learning.

If you could have dinner with three people dead or alive, who would it be and why? 

  • I would like to have dinner and reflections with Michael Jordan, Meek Mill and Jerry Rice. All have very unique backgrounds and perspectives.

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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