As a freshman, Victor Adeyanju came into the Indiana Hoosiers’ football
program carrying just 215 pounds on his 6-foot-4 frame. As he worked tenaciously
in the weight room, he bulked up over the years to an impressive 275 pounds and
became a force to be reckoned with at the left defensive end position.
Adeyanju had his best season with the Hoosiers, recording 6.5 sacks to finish
his collegiate career with 13.5. Using his athleticism and a quick initial
burst, the Hoosier defensive end had to increasingly learn how to beat
double-teams -- a skill that will come in handy at the pro level.
But something else that is sure to impress pro scouts is his durability at a
very violent position where legs and arms get tangled and twisted throughout
each game. Adeyanju started 43 consecutive games for Indiana, and in addition to
his 13.5 sacks, he completed his career at Indiana with 151 tackles (107 solo),
31 stops for losses, and five forced fumbles. Adeyanju played in the Senior Bowl
and is a certain first-day pick in the NFL Draft.
At the NFL Combine in Indianapolis, Victor had a formal interview with the
Colts and head coach Tony Dungy. And there's a good reason why. We share those details in the second half of this interview as a ColtPower.com Insiders exclusive.
Victor talked to ColtPower's Ed Thompson about his Combine
experience, his background, his conversation with the Colts and his football
Question: Tell us a little bit about your childhood because I know
you have a unique background. From what I understand you were born in the United
States, but moved to Nigeria.
Victor Adeyanju: I was originally born in Chicago. In order for our
parents to provide us with better living arrangements, they moved us in with our
grandparents in Nigeria for about for four years. After that, they moved us back
to America on the east side of Chicago.
Q: You didn’t have an easy childhood in terms of your family’s
financial situation, did you?
VA: No sir. When we came back from Nigeria, we were living pretty much
in the slums of Chicago – one bedroom, two bedroom apartments, really rough
neighborhood. But my dad continued to save money so he could move us into a
little better place, which was a house. It was very tough, even just being in
Nigeria, being away from your parents. But at the same time, we knew our father
was working, he was going to bring us back when things were ready.
Q: I would imagine that by going through that experience you have a
very close family.
VA: Definitely, definitely. Our father makes us realize that even if
you have all the money in the world it doesn’t bring you happiness. Being
close to your family, being a good person, walking the right path, brings more
happiness to his eyes than anything else. He lets us know how hard life is, how
hard he works, how hard we shall struggle, how hard we should fight to be
Q: How many brothers and sisters do you have, and where are you in
VA: I have four brothers and one sister -- two older brothers, two
younger brothers and one sister. So I’m somewhere in the middle.
Q: You seem like truly a nice person. Football is a very aggressive
game. Where do you find that aggression out on the football field?
VA: (Laughs) We’re all human. Everybody gets mad. The reason why
I’m so nice outside of football is because I take out my aggression out on the
football field. Some things really tick me off. I usually don’t talk about
them, but when you’re on the football field, I just bring that energy out,
that meanness and just put it all on the field. That’s pretty much where I
channel all my energy.
Q: I know you had 6.5 sacks last year. To what do you attribute that
VA: Just growing more and more, and learning my strengths. My last
coach taught me some of my strengths. He really liked my bull rush. He really
liked my power moves. I was able to use that a lot more this year. And it’s
just being a hard worker. In the weight room, when you think about the previous
year, when you couldn’t push your guy, when you couldn’t run fast enough,
you take that into consideration when you’re lifting weights and running.
Q: What are the strengths you think you would bring to an NFL team?
VA: Quickness and speed, also the size I have. I’m able to attack the
line, as well as attack the pass consistently. I also know my arms and just the
speed I have allow me to shed defenders off quickly, getting me to the
ColtPower Insiders can click here for the rest of this interview at Coltpower.com. Victor talks about his Combine experience, meeting with the Colts, and the versatility he possesses that could be a big draw for Indianapolis on draft day!