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2021 NFL Draft Prospect Interview: Justin Covington, RB, Villanova University

Justin Covington Villanova
Villanova’s leader and team captain at RB, Justin Covington, recently sat down with NFL Draft Diamonds writer Jimmy Williams.
  • Name: Justin Covington
  • Height: 5’10”
  • Weight: 215 lbs
  • Position: RB
  • College: Villanova University
  • Twitter: @_jcov1

Tell us about your university/college. Did you participate in any other activities or campus organizations other than football?

Villanova is a medium-sized school with a beautiful campus. Classes are small enough where you are able to engage with your professors and campus is big enough where you may see someone you have not met every once in a while. I am a member of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Incorporated as well as a member of the Student Nurses Association of Pennsylvania. I was also a Spring 2020 initiate of Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society. 

What do your teammates say is your best quality?

My teammates would say my best quality is my passion. I put my heart into what I do on and off the field no matter what it is. I give my best for my teammates and those around me so we are all able to accomplish more.

What kind of role do you see yourself in on the team? What scheme and/or position suits your skill set?

The role I see myself on my team is a leader. I was honored to be voted on of the three team captains on my team for the 2019-2020 season, and it was something I do not take likely. I play running back. I think most backs would prefer a downhill I-formation kind of style. My career to date has consisted of the spread formation. I’ve grown to love it and think no matter what scheme or formation, whenever the ball is in your hands, you need to get your job done.

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

Tom Flacco. Granted I played offense and was never actually on the field with him, he is a baller. Everytime he had the ball in his hands, it felt like at any moment it could have been a big play. 

Which one of your teammates impresses you the most?

Forrest Rhyne. He was one of my co-captains this past and my roommate in the summer. Throughout these last couple years, I have been able to really bond with him and become closer. Love him like he was my own brother. His work ethic is unbelievable and his commitment to his family and success is something truly to admire. Being around him in one way or another will make you better. 

Describe a time in your life when you were able to overcome a struggle.

I was the leading rusher in FCS last year going into the 6th game of the year. In the second quarter, I tore my ACL. It was the first time I was injured in my football career. Through surgery, rehab and the recovery process, I learned to take the good with the bad and continue to push forward, not only for myself but for my teammates as well.

If you didn’t play football, what other sport would you play?

Track. I loved track in high school. I ran 10.79 senior year of high school. I still continue to watch track and keep in touch with my track friends.

What is something that you are most proud of? What would you say is your biggest achievement?

Playing football and receiving a Bachelor of Science in Nursing.

Describe one of the most memorable plays of your collegiate career.

In overtime against Towson this past season, the first play I was able to bust a 23 yard run out the gate. It felt surreal. Dan scored the next play.  We would go on to win the game after a key fourth down stop from our defense. 

Check out NFL Draft Diamonds 2021 Small School Rankings

Do you have a favorite athlete or professional team? Is there a player that you model your game after?

Lebron James is my favorite athlete of all time. Professional team, unfortunately, I am a Jets, Mets, and Knicks fan. It has been a rough couple of years to say the least. It is interesting because I love watching film of running backs from Barry Sanders and Jim Brown to Adrian Peterson, Reggie Bush, Le’veon Bell, and Christian McCaffrey. I try to learn from each whether it is patient running, catching, or bruising guys who bounce off when people try to tackle them. I ask my coaches all the time who I run like and get different answers. I just try to learn from those before me and have fun with it.

Who is your favorite music artist? What gets you pumped before a game?

Meek Mill. I usually listen to several different Meek songs from his different albums to get pumped. Surprisingly, I also listen to many different instrumentals from random music groups which I enjoy. For our team highlight videos, I am always asking our media director, TJ, what is the instrumental in the background because I enjoyed them. 

What is your favorite comfort food?

Rice and Oxtails.

Do you have a favorite movie or actor?

My favorite movie of all-time is The Dark Knight. Heath Ledger’s joker performance is unmatched. Do not really have a favorite actor per se. 

What do you do in your spare time? Do you have any hobbies?

Aside from working out, I enjoy video games, anime TV shows and walking. I love to take walks and listen to music. 

Who or what motivates you the most?

My mother. She’s the reason why I am, where I am today. WIthout her, none of this would be possible.


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