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2020 NFL Draft Prospect Interview: Kalen Hicks, S, University of Hawaii

Kalen Hicks the big and physical safety from the University of Hawaii recently sat down with NFL Draft Diamonds owner Damond Talbot.
  • Name: Kalen Hicks
  • Height: 6’2
  • Weight: 210
  • Position: Safety
  • College: University of Hawaii
  • Twitter: @kalenhicks

Tell us about your hometown, and what you love most about it?

• I love Las Vegas it’s a cool city. For the most part I just chill and hang and with family but there is a lot you can do and everything is pretty convenient.

List these three in order of importance and why: Film Study, Strength and Conditioning and Practice?

• I think first is film study because the game is so mental, so getting familiar with your opponent gives you an upper hand in the game. The next two are tough but I would go with practice next because that’s where you bring the film to life and rep plays and formations from teams to be more comfortable with them in the game which brings confidence. Lastly strength and conditiong which is still important because you have to keep your body right and in shape to compete at the highest level.

What do you worry about, and why?

• I worry about my family and making sure I’m a good role model for them. I just want to make them proud and motivate them and others.

Give me an example of when you failed at something. How did you react and how did you overcome failure?

• I suffered two ACL injuries my senior year in high school and my freshman year in college. Those were the hardest times in my life and many people doubted my ability to keep playing or make it to the next level, but I persevered through and got healthy again and continued to play and show I can make it.

What do your teammates say is your best quality?

• I would say my knowledge of the defense. I’m good at knowing not only my job but everyone on the defense and knowing where there’s strengths or weakness and using that to my advantage.

Who is the best player you have ever played against in college?

• Jabrill Peppers my freshman year when we played Michigan

What would your career be if you couldn’t play football?

• Either a trainer or a juvenile probation officer.

Room, desk and car – which do you clean first?

• Room

If there was a disaster and you could either save three strangers or one family member, which would you choose and why?

• One family member because that’s someone That has stuck by my side through it all and holds a lot of value to me.

Tell me about your biggest adversity in life and how you’ve dealt with or overcome it?

• My biggest adversity is those ACL injuries and overcoming those. It was sort of a depressing time but at the same time I had a mentality that I had to overcome it and keep pursuing my dream

What is your most embarrassing moment?

• I would say almost being late first day of spring ball practice. Practice started at 6:15 and I woke up at 6:07 in the dorms which was about a 5 minute walk but I had to still get my pads on and all that. I just woke up in my basketball shorts and started running to the locker room and passed all the coaches on the way down.

What was the most memorable play of your collegiate career?

• My most memorable play would be getting a game winning tackle against Arizona. Me and my teammate tackled the QB with no time left at the 1yd line to save our lead and win.

What song best describes your work ethic?

• Hussle and motivate by Nipsey Hussle

What is the most important trait you can have (Physical or Non-Physical) to help you succeed at the next level?

• Focus

If you could bring one person back from the dead for one day, who would it be and why?

• Sean Taylor so I could talk about the game with him.

Who is the most underrated player in the NFL?

• I would say mark Barron because he made that transition from safety to linebacker and I like that role he has.

Would you rather be liked or respected, and why?

• Respected because that goes a long way and holds more weight then being liked

What player who had his career derailed by off-field issues do you feel for the most and why?

• Junior Seau because his issues came from the physicality of the game and carried over off the field. It’s a sad reality check to some players about CTE and and something that shouldn’t be token lightly.

Do you love to win, or hate to lose?

• Hate to lose

Who has been the biggest influence on your life and explain why?

• I would say my family is my biggest influence because everything I do is to make them proud and seeing my little brother balling out in football too.


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