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2023 NFL Draft Prospect Interview: Kole Murlin, LB, Siena Heights

Kole Murlin is the leader of the Siena Heights defense and primed primed for another All-American season
Kole Murlin is the leader of the Siena Heights defense and primed for another All-American season. He recently sat down with Jimmy Williams of NFL Draft Diamonds
  • Name: Kole Murlin
  • Height: 6’1”
  • Weight: 240 lbs.
  • Position: LB
  • College: Siena Heights
  • Twitter: kolemurlin15
  • Instagram: kolemurlin15

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?
I am currently a double major, majoring in Special Education with a focus in Cognitive Development and also majoring in Elementary Education. I have a cumulative GPA of 3.9, and I will be student teaching this fall.

What do your teammates say is your best quality?
My teammates talk about my leadership skills. I’m all about leading by example and serving others. I like bringing others along with me and setting an example for the younger players. I never want to get outworked, and I’m always competing at the highest level possible.

What kind of role do you see yourself in on the team? What scheme and/or position suits your skill set?
At our school, we run a 4-3 base scheme where I’m the MLB. Sometimes, I work on the outside depending on the team we are facing although I mostly play the middle of the field. I’m the QB of the defense, and I take control, reading and reacting, trusting my eyes and instincts. I’m regularly in coverage versus RBs and slot WRs. Our coaches trust me to make automatic checks throughout the course of the game so that I can adjust on the fly. I also take a lot of pride regarding special teams. I’ve played almost all the units. I want to be on the field contributing as much as possible. I’m willing to learn and adapt to whatever a coach needs me to do.

Who is the best player you have ever played against in college?
My freshman year, I played against Joe Conner of Concordia Ann Arbor. He was an explosive RB that was hard to tackle.

Which one of your teammates impresses you the most?
Khoreice Crawford is a natural athlete in our defensive secondary. He has a great mindset and leadership skills. He uses his great length to be a lockdown corner and shut down his side of the field.

Describe a time in your life when you were able to overcome a struggle.
During my 8th grade year, I separated my shoulder while playing football. Coincidentally, the following year during my freshman year of high school, I separated my other shoulder and broke my collarbone. Being injured was tough. It made me rethink a lot of things, thinking that maybe I should have stuck with soccer. I went through all the physical therapy and eventually got back to 100%. While I was recovering, I had 2 choices to make: Was I going to be a team player or was I going to give up and go a different path. I decided that I didn’t want to be a worthless member on our sideline doing nothing. So, I took the time to study the game more and help out my teammates. Being able to see the game a different way, I was able to be another coach on our team and help the other players. Going through my struggle helped give me a new perspective and be a better student of the game. I don’t know where I’d be without football.

If you didn’t play football, what other sport would you play?
Probably baseball. That was another sport that came naturally to me as a kid. I played shortstop in high school and was a decent hitter. I just had more of a passion for football which is a much more physical game.

What is something that you are most proud of? What would you say is your biggest achievement?
I’m very proud of my ability to earn a scholarship and being in the position I am today where I have the opportunity to play at the professional level. I’m very happy about my experience at Siena Heights on and off the field with all of the memories that I’ve had. I’m really looking forward to what the future holds this season and beyond.

Some of the accolades that I’ve been able to achieve are being a 2-time All-American, 2-time team captain, 2-time Academic All-American, and 2-time Defensive Player of the year for our conference.

Describe one of the most memorable plays of your collegiate career.
My sophomore year, we were at home playing against Trinity International, and I was able to get a pick 6. It was so cool because as a defensive player, you rarely get a chance to touch the ball and score. It brought me back to my high school days where I played RB and slot WR. Getting that interception was awesome. All of the defensive guys were blocking hard, really working to get me in the endzone. When we got there, the entire defensive unit was there to celebrate. It was a special moment.

Do you have a favorite athlete or professional team? Is there a player that you model your game after?
Pat Tillman is a player that I have a ton of respect for. He was undersized, but his heart was all there, and he proved everyone wrong. He had excellent aggression and attitude, having the best work ethic and being the hardest hitter on the field. Yet, off the field, he put other people first, and ultimately gave his life for our country.

Who is your favorite music artist? What gets you pumped before a game?
I live on a farm, and enjoy country music with artists like Luck Combs, Morgan Wallen and Hardy.

What is your favorite comfort food?
I live off of noodles, rice and chicken.

Do you have a favorite movie, TV show or actor?
One of my favorite movies is “Greater” which is an underrated football movie that everyone should watch. I also like comedy and enjoy Will Ferrell movies. 

What do you do in your spare time? Do you have any hobbies? Any secret talents?
I’m an outdoors guy, and I hate sitting down. I’m always working on our farm. Other than that, I enjoy spending time with my family and friends. We have a lake where we spend time. I also enjoy my time in the gym, lifting with my younger brother and showing him proper technique. I’ve also volunteered with the Special Olympics.

Why do you play football? Who or what motivates you the most?
I love the aggressiveness of football. It’s so much fun. I’ve created so many life-long relationships through football. It’s also a wonderful thing that with all the bad things going on in the world that everyone can come together in the locker room regardless of their race, religion or background.

My family really motivates me. There’s no better feeling than seeing them up in the stands and cheering me on. That’s one of the things that really drives me. There’s also my teammates. I want to give them everything I have and not give up on them. Also, my coaches. They put their heart and soul into everything they do, preparing for each game and season. They motivate me to give them everything I have.

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