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2022 NFL Draft Prospect Interview: Kainoa Fuiava, DL, Western Michigan University

Kainoa Fuiava the standout defensive lineman from Western Michigan University recently sat down with NFL Draft Diamonds writer Justin Berendzen
Kainoa Fuiava the standout defensive lineman from Western Michigan University recently sat down with NFL Draft Diamonds writer Justin Berendzen
  • Name: Kainoa Fuiava
  • Position: DL
  • College: Western Michigan University
  • Height: 6’4″
  • Weight: 305 lbs
  • Twitter: @KainoaFuiava
  • Instagram: @KainoaFuiava

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

When I was playing football in Pop Warner, we were in a close game in the 4th quarter. I ended up making the game winning touchdown. After I scored, I looked towards the sidelines, and just saw everyone’s faces glow with smiles and cheers of joy, celebrating for/with me was a life changing experience and made me want to continue that forever. I live for the thrill and the excitement of others.

If you could hang out with any football player past or present for a day who and why?

Marshawn Lynch hands down. He is pure comedy and also is a man with a lot of knowledge in the game. I feel like he can relate to me and speak some words to me that would help benefit myself in my future.

If there was a billboard with 5 of your traits on it which 5 traits would be up there?

Athletic, physical, hardworking, determined, and high motor.

What sets you apart from other defensive linemen?

My mentality is what makes me different than others. When working and training, I always train myself to be the best and always compete with those who are with me. When I lose, I go back and study and ask questions to help benefit my game. I learn to win, and losing is never an option of satisfaction. No matter how fast or strong that man is in front of me, I will always find a way to win. “You never fail until you stop trying” is something my grandfather always said and preached to our family.

What are your favorite moments from your football life?

My favorite moments would be the team meals. I get to sit down with some great people and make many friends while eating some good food. I like interacting with people learning how they grew up and seeing how I could relate to them.

How are you planning to prepare for the draft?

I’m doing something everyday. I train with a group of men that help motivate and push one another in everything we do. We train 2 times a day, 6 days a week. Sunday is one training session just working on true defensive line drills.

What do you think are the keys to success on the football field?

I believe in a team, and everyone doing their 1/11th. Everyone has a job and with everyone executing their job properly we will get wins. For my position I believe in alignment, assignment, get off, hands on keys, read our keys, disengagement, pursuit and make your play.

What should we know about Kainoa Fuiava the person?

I’m a homebody that loves talking and making friends. But I can’t really just spill everything about me from the jump. I’m somewhat a type of a guy that you gotta chat with and really get to know.

How do you handle challenges both in life and on the football field?

Handling challenges really was hard at first because I would never speak up on anything I would be going through. Later on in my college career I learned that communication is the answer for all challenges. Another thing is getting my priorities right first. Whenever I was stuck in a situation between the two, I would always try to communicate with my family and coach to make my choice from there.

What would a team get in a player like you?

You are getting a humble athlete that is coachable and is willing to do whatever it takes to win. Someone who puts others first but has that mamba mentality.

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

I’m not the “rah rah” type of guy. I’m somewhat quiet but tries to find the problem and speak up on it with the team to find a solution.

What are you looking to achieve as a football player going forward?

I have goals and tasks that I set for myself for everything. But before I try to get ahead of myself, I’m still working on a current goal, which is making it to a team first.

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