10 interviews with Under Armour All-Americans

Orlando, FL — Over the past few months, we were lucky enough to interview several players who made it onto the roster for the Under Armour AllAmerica Game.  The top recruits that were invited to this game are undoubtedly some of the best players in the class of 2017 and hail from every corner of the country.  

The following article is a collection of highlights from those interviews and since we’re such big DeSoto Eagle fans here are FootballGazette.com we felt it was only right to kick off this special edition Q&A compilation with two hog mollies from DeSoto U – Xavier Newman and Edward “Big Ed” Ingram.


Eddie “Stack of Pancakes” Ingram – OT


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Q: Who’s your biggest influence when it comes to football?

A: “Evan Washington, a DeSoto/LSU alum.  He mentored the O-line last year and shared a lot of his knowledge.  Just the fact that he went to my high school and went to the college I’m going to (LSU) is awesome. 

Q: If you could play for any NFL team, which one would it be?

A: Baltimore Ravens

Q: Could your DeSoto Eagles beat Bishop Gorman?

A: “We take the season one game at a time. So I never really thought about  Bishop Gorman, but we have some of the best coaches and players in the entire country so I know it would be a hard fought battle no matter what!” 

Q: How long have the seniors on the team been playing together? Were any of you teammates before high school?

A: “Most of them I’ve met in middle school but we’ve gotten closer in high school. I’ve probably been playing with Channing Hawkins one of our Defensive Ends the longest.”

Q: What do you plan college to be like your first year?

A: “My first year of college I plan for it to be challenging because I have to adapt to being by myself.”

Q: Do you think you’ll be red shirted your first year?

A: “I think I would play my first year of college because I can learn plays easily and I’m aggressive.”

Q: Do you think you’ll be ready for college level football your first year?

A: “I’ll be ready to play in the college because I’m not scared of anyone they put in front of me.”

Q: What activities do you plan on doing outside of football in your leisure time?

A: “Well during my spare time I help out around the house by cleaning up or driving my mom somewhere. But when I’m done helping out I love to fish and watch monster truck rallies on TV.  I’m not one of those people that like to party I might just work out and go to different competitive games.”

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Q: What do you specifically like about LSU that made you chose them over all your other offers?

A: “I really like the coaching staff and sense of community, but specifically the things I like about LSU is their tradition, they have so much of it – like the field goal posts, it’s been that way for years and no other college I know of has it that way. I love playing at night too, I think it brings out more energy in the fans. And I also think Geaux tigers is clever I like how they reach back deep into the French roots of Louisiana to get that”

Q: What do you plan on majoring in at LSU in the fall?

A: “I’m considering either Agricultural Business or Accounting”

Q: If you could travel anywhere in the world where would you visit?

A: “I would love to visit Dubai some time but I know that’s a long term goal although I hope to reach it.  I have to work hard to get the opportunity to go there. Also, Petra in Jordan looks amazing”

Q: If you could play for any NFL team, which one would you choose?

A: Ravens

Q: Would you rather own a helicopter or the Batmobile?

A: “I would rather own the Bat Mobile because I always wanted to drive it especially his motorcycle that thing is a beast”


Xavier Newman – OG


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Q: How long have the seniors on the team been playing together? Were any of you teammates before high school?

A: “I’ve been knowing KD Nixon since middle school.” 

Q: What do you enjoy doing in your free time?

A: “My favorite hobby is Watching TV and going out with my friends.”

Q: Do you think DeSoto plays on such a higher level you guys are more prepared than most for the next level than most HS players?

A: “yessir we play on a very high level due to the fact that we go against the best in the country everyday single and pick up on each others game to make each other better”


CJ Thorpe – OG


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Q: Do you have a nickname?

A: “Some people call me Savage, but mostly just call me CJ.”

Q: What would you like to major in at PSU in the fall?

A: “I want to study some form of pre-law, but I haven’t made any official decision yet”

Q: Who’s your biggest influence when it comes to football?

A: “My Dad who played at PSU”

Q: What made you choose Penn State over other schools?

A:  “The way my Dad raised me helped me choose PSU over other schools because I know the tradition and seen it.”

Q: As an offensive lineman, your job is to protect your teammates.  Do you have any notable memories of saving a teammate from getting crushed at the last second?

A: “Yeah there have been a few times, but I remember one time in particular, they brought a blitz and I blocked the end but a backer came off the edge and almost crushed the QB so I to adjust, got myself in position and saved him at the last second.”

Q: Which NFL team would you like to play for the most?

A: “Ideally I want to play for the Steelers, but to be completely honest I’d probably play for the team willing to pay the most.  After all, football is a business.”


Sean Clifford – QB


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Q: Who’s your biggest influence when it comes to football?

A: “My Dad, John Clifford.”

Q: Which NFL team would you like to play for the most?

A: “Miami Dolphins”

Q: What would you like to major in at PSU in the fall?

A: “Undecided”


Robert Hainsey – OG


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Q: Who’s your biggest influence when it comes to football?

A: “Definitely my parents they have guided me all the way up to this point.”

Q: Other than school and football, what are your biggest interests and hobbies?

A: “School and football take up most my time, but if I do have free time I just like hanging out with my friends “

Q: What do you plan on major in at Notre Dame in the fall?

A: “Business”

Q: What made you choose Notre Dame or the other schools that made you offers?

A: “What it can do for me outside of football. Notre dame is a great school and I feel it will prepare and set me up best for life after football.”

Q: Who’s your favorite player or players of all time?

A: “Taylor Lewan and Joe Thomas, I watch guys like that a lot and try to learn what I can.”

Q: If you cold play for any team in the NFL, which one would you chose?

A: “I’d have to be loyal to my hometown and say the Steelers, but I’d also love to play for the Cowboys.”

Q: If you could travel to any place in the world, where would you visit?

A: “Italy, no doubt”


Tee Higgins – WR


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Q: What do you plan on majoring in at Clemson in the fall?

A: Communications

Q: What NFL team would you like to play for?

A: “Doesn’t really matter!” (I loved that answer, my sentiments exactly)

Q: Who’s your biggest influence when it comes to football?

A: “My mom and my sister”


Kary Vincent – CB


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Q: Who’s your biggest influence when it comes to football?

A: “My biggest influence in life and football are my parents and teammates because at the end of the day that’s who I play for.”

Q: Outside of football and school, how do you like to spend your free time?

A “Outside of football I hang out with friends and play videos games, just stuff like that”

Q: What’s your favorite video game?

A: Madden

Q: What do you plan on majoring in at LSU in the fall?

A: “I’ll be majoring in communications at LSU”

Q: What made you choose LSU over other schools?

A: “When people ask why LSU? I ask why not LSU?


Ryan Kelly – QB


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Q: Who’s your biggest influence when it comes to football?

A: “For sure my parents.”

Q: What do you plan on majoring in at ASU in the fall?

A: “Not sure what I wanted to major in yet”

Q: What made you choose ASU over other schools?

A: “I’ve always really liked ASU for their school and their football growing up and having such a great relationship with all the coaches on their staff just made ASU that much better for me.”


Jonathon “Feisty” Van Diest – DE


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Q: Who’s your biggest influence when it comes to football?

A: “My biggest influence when it comes to football can be credited to my dad. For pushing me when I really didn’t want to and spending hours and much of his time to provide me with opportunities to get better.”

Q: What made you choose Colorado over other offers?

A:”I chose CU because I wanted to be a part of something that came around once in a blue moon, to be a part of a growing program and to contribute to that. Also, it was close enough and far away enough from home and the campus is beautiful and I wanted to play football there and live there.”

Q: What do you plan on majoring in at Colorado in the fall?

A: “I’m looking at majoring in business at Leads. Unsure about what specific study though.”


Toneil Carter – RB


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Q: What’s the best advice you’ve ever been given?

A: Never commit to the coaches commit to the school.  

Q: Who’s the best player you’ve ever played against?

A: “Trelon Smith RB at Cypress Ridge HS”

Q: Who’s your biggest influence?

A: ” My older brother.”


2017 Under Armour All-American Game

At Camping World Stadium

Sunday, January 1 @ 1 pm est on ESPN


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