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2022 NFL Draft Prospect Interview: Christian O’Ryan Van Horn, DL, University of Charleston

Christian O’Ryan Van Horn the versatile defensive lineman from the University of Charleston (WV) recently sat down with Draft Diamonds
Christian O’Ryan Van Horn the versatile defensive lineman from the University of Charleston (WV) recently sat down with Draft Diamonds
  • Name: Christian O’Ryan Van Horn
  • Position: Defensive Line
  • College: University of Charleston
  • Height: 6’1
  • Weight: 264 lbs.
  • Twitter: @cvanhorn55
  • Instagram: _incvhwetrust

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

  • As a 6’1 defensive lineman that weighs 264 pounds playing nose tackle in a 3-man front my entire senior season. I stand out by being a versatile athlete that comes with tremendous speed, power, great football IQ, and known to be very coachable. Also, in anything and everything that I do in life I will work hard for it, show how dedicated I am to that job, when things fail or get tough, I will always keep fighting. Before I attended the University of Charleston, I was recruited to play defensive end but as years passed by my athleticism has progress and my coaches wanted me to learn all three positions on the Defensive line (DT, N, DE). I do have a reputation of being a leader on and off the field by aligning my actions with my words. I believe in motivating myself and the team to be our best selves. The coaches and my teammates nominated me as team captain for this season. The leadership role as a captain is an honor because it shows that my teammates trust and respect me for who I am as a player/person. They rely on me to get the job done. At the end of this season, I was selected for the post-season award, Second Team All-Conference and being nominated for the Cliff Harris Player of the Year Award. 

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

  • I started playing football at the age of 9 years old. It was at the age of 13 when I got really interested in playing the sport of football. 

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

  • These NFL teams should know that I’m accountable, dependable, hardworking, and dedicated in everything that I do.

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

  • I would donate/partner with mobile clinics that provide medical care to people who can’t afford to go to the doctor, dental care, eye exams or the hospitals.

What is the best advice you have ever received? 

  • The best advice that I have received was to work hard by honing my craft and to reap the rewards later.

Who was your childhood hero? 

  • My Childhood Hero is Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson because he believes in himself and fight for what he wants by working hard for everything that he has accomplished in life. I admire how he transition from a college football player to wrestling in the World Wrestling Federation/ World Wrestling Entertainment, and currently has a successful acting career. In addition, he gives back to the community when he’s not working. Also, I respect how he manages his time with work and his family. He uses the hardships he encountered in life to motivate himself and to encourage others to believe in themselves.

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

  • The most underrated athlete/teammate in the locker room at my school would be Philip Fleshman (Running Back) because he will outwork everybody on and off the field. During, practices he will go hard every play, and during those plays he will work his craft with his feet, eye vision, football IQ, and continues to go whenever the play has ended. Off the field, he continues to work on his craft in the weight room and the field when he’s not with the team.

What is your biggest pet peeve? 

  • My biggest pet peeve is when people are not willing to work hard at getting better every day in practice or to make themselves better athletes and prepare for the upcoming games. Another is when people say that they are going to change something or work on something that they are struggling with, and they don’t follow through with it.

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

  • The hardest moment that I had to overcome in my life is when I was behind two NFL prospects in the first three years of my college career excluding my freshman year in 2016. I started feeling like the love of the game of football was being taken away from me. I was losing faith in myself that my time was never going to come for me to show the world what I am capable of doing on the field. So, I started to outwork people by training when nobody was watching. During my off-season, when I am at home, I worked on different techniques to enhance what I am good at and to improve on my weaknesses. When I was with the team it would show and catch the eyes of the coaches and they started to notice me.  Eventually, my hard work did pay off, but I wasn’t satisfied because I was feeling hungry and wanted to exceed my potential.

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

  • The University of Charleston will always be home for me because of how the staff and students treated each other like we were a family. As a fellow athlete, I noticed that all athletes supported all the teams by being at the games or watching it online, or supporting each teams’ social platforms. At this university the atmosphere and environment were always welcoming and breathtaking, it was very diverse due to having people from all different places from around the world.

What is your favorite snack food? 

  • My favorite snack to have during the day are Jamaican Beef Patties.

What is the best part of football? 

  • The best part of football is building lifelong relationships with your teammates, the game-day atmosphere, making moments/memories on and off the field that you could talk about 10 years later.

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

  • In this life I am here for a purpose and I will give it my all until my last breath.

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

  • I would compare myself to Aaron Donald because of the techniques that he utilizes while playing in the game to win instantly such as the arm of elbow move. 

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

  1. The first person I would have dinner with is my grandfather that passed away when I was in middle school. He did not live to see me develop as a man and a player in high school or college. I would sit down and tell him all about it. I used to watch the Miami Hurricanes and Miami Dolphins games with him.
  2. The second person would be Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson to tell that he is my role model. Share with him the obstacles that encountered, how I got through them, and the accomplishments that came with overcoming them. I would seek advice from him about life and football.
  3. The third person is Adrian Marks because he’s my trainer, mentor, and another male figure in my life that saw potential in me. He has been mentoring and investing in me since high school. Outside of football, he’s the guy that I could go and talk to about anything that I’m going through. He keeps me grounded and provides words of wisdom for my future.

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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