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2023 NFL Draft Prospect Interview: Jalen Cole, OL, Aurora University

Jalen Cole the standout offensive lineman from Aurora University recently sat down with NFL Draft Diamonds owner Damond Talbot.
Jalen Cole the standout offensive lineman from Aurora University recently sat down with NFL Draft Diamonds owner Damond Talbot.
  • Name: Jalen Cole
  • Position: Offensive Guard
  • College: Aurora University 
  • Height: 6’4”
  • Weight: 320lbs
  • Twitter: Jalen_88
  • Instagram: Jalenc77 

What makes you a top prospect at your position  in the 2023 NFL Draft? 

I would say my natural God-given strength and size are the main thing. My ability to pull and get to the next level is the strongest part of my game. I end blocks quickly, have a high motor, and have some of the best power and the point of contact. Even though I haven’t been playing the position long I have a great understanding of blitzes and stunts and I’m good at sniffing out what the defense is trying to do before it happens.

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

I started being interested in and playing the sport of football at the age of 7. I didn’t fall in love with it until I was 14 and watched my first superbowl game which was the Patriots and Seahawks superbowl. Still salty about that game.

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

I want NFL teams to know that I am coachable and a fast learner. I’ll do anything you ask of me. I’ve just started playing OL last year and still have a lot to learn, so I am always looking for ways to improve my game and get better.

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

It would be to athletes who have Sickle-Cell. I have Sickle-Cell trait and didn’t really know much about it until I got to college. I think it’s something athletes should learn more about.

What is the best advice you have ever received? 

The best advice I’ve received is to trust in the Lord with all my heart and lean not on my own understanding; in all my ways acknowledge him and he will set my paths straight. Proverbs 3:5-6. God has been a blessing in my life and will continue to bless me so I put my full faith in him.

Who was your childhood hero? 

My mother. She raised me by myself for 15 years and seeing as she still made sure I was straight I could never thank her enough. She sacrificed so much for me to be where I am today.

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

Matthew Kickel for sure. One of if not the hardest working guys I know. Does everything right on and off the field, and is an even nastier Offensive Lineman. I expect him to do big things this season.

What is your biggest pet peeve? 

My biggest pet peeve is when people put their limitations onto me. A lot of the time people don’t think I can do something because they can’t do it themselves. I’d like to create my own standard. 

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

The hardest moment in my life I’ve had to overcome was the passing of my uncle Dwain Williams. He was killed in an attempted carjacking. I’ve watched the video and seen how everything went down, and it hurt me a lot. I didn’t really show it because I had to stay strong for my family but it affected me more than I thought it would. I started gaining weight not working out as much. I just prayed to God to help me get through this, and through him I was able to overcome that feeling of hurt and pain, and was able to use that emotion on the field.

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

My school has a special atmosphere. Aurora has the majority of its students also doing sports so in return a lot of athletes from other teams are very close. Every sport supports each other, we all go to each other’s games home or away and cheer each other on. It has really created a great culture and community of students all around.

What is your favorite snack food? 

My favorite is Beef Jerky. Teriyaki to be exact. I can eat those all day. And Oreos with milk specifically.

What is the best part of football? 

Running the ball knowing a team can’t stop it. No better feeling. Also building relationships with my teammates. I love every teammate I’ve ever had and cherish the connections I’ve built with them.

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

I would say I’m a high character player who stays out of trouble, hates losing, and will give my all in anything you need/ask of me.

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

Even though he just got drafted I would say I’m most comparable to Ikem Ekwonu.

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

First-person I would choose would be Brandon Burlsworth. He is the reason I wear number 77. His story inspired me a lot when I first heard about it so I would love to speak with him. The next person would be Kobe Bryant. I would love to talk about how he was able to get to where he was mental. Lastly, I would like to have dinner with Muhammad Ali. He’s my favorite athlete of all time and I wish I had the chance to meet him.

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