Jaamal Berry Speaks With BSB Subscribers

Four-star tailback Jaamal Berry signed with Ohio State after a stellar high school career at Miami Palmetto. Berry was gracious enough to answer questions posed by BSB subscribers. Check out the interview by Bill Greene to see if your question was answered.

Greene: I have to warn you that some of these are off the wall. Berry: "They're Buckeye fans. I expect them to be pretty crazy [laughing]." schultgb asks: How much do you weigh right now? Berry: "I think I'm around 192 pounds right now."

FunkMastaBuck asks: Is there an NFL back you would compare yourself to? Who is the best defensive player you've played against? Berry: "I would say Adrian Peterson or Marion Barber. I can do some of things both those guys do. The best defensive player I played against in high school was Frankie Telfort."

buckwild23 asks: What number will you wear at Ohio State? Which coach recruited you? Do you have any hobbies? Berry: "I think they're giving me number four to start with. Eventually, I want to wear number five. I was recruited by Luke Fickell and Paul Haynes in the beginning. Then it was Doc Tressel and Jim Tressel that kind of took over. For hobbies, I just lift weights and run."

OSU37 asks: Do you think you will start? What do you need to work on the most? Berry: "I'd like to be the starter, but it depends on how hard I work to learn the system. I need to work on getting stronger and faster."

Irishguy asks: How do you rate yourself as a receiver and as a pass-blocker? Berry: "I think I'm very good as a receiver, probably an eight on a scale of ten. I give an honest effort as a blocker and I think I do pretty well, but want to get better as I get coached up."

osumanns22 asks: Have you grown to despise Michigan yet? Berry: "No, I don't hate Michigan yet [laughing]. That will probably come as I get up there and get involved in the rivalry. I know how intense it is."

jak099 asks: How excited are you to play with Terrelle Pryor? Berry: "Oh man, I can't wait to get up there and hopefully be on the field with him. He's one of the top players in college football right now, and hopefully he and I can help each other be better players."

Buckandy: What are your thoughts on the Michigan game? What do you plan to do to make sure the streak continues? What would it mean to get your tree in Buckeye Grove? Berry: "I'm hoping to ball out like Beanie did against them. I just want to put about 200 on them, and that should keep the streak going. Man, to get a tree planted would be such an honor and something I'm shooting for. That would be a great way to go out."

lharbers asks: When did you know you were a Buckeye? Was there any doubt after you made that decision? Berry: "I knew when I visited for the spring game last year. Just being around the fans and seeing all the tradition surrounding the program was hard to forget. I never had any doubt after I made my decision, right Bill [laughing]?" Greene adds: "Never a doubt."

rollymolly2 asks: Are you looking forward to seeing snow in the winter? What's your favorite food? Berry: "I am looking forward to being in the snow next winter, believe it or not. My favorite food is chicken or shrimp."

osumanns22 asks: What is your true forty time? Berry: "I ran a 4.31 at a Scout combine. I was clocked at a 4.28 at my high school."

BirmBuckeye asks: How are the grades coming along? How much pressure was there to stay home and attend college in Florida? Berry: "My grades are doing real well and I've done well every grading period. Florida chased me all the way to the end and they didn't want to lose me, but there wasn't any pressure from the fans or anything like that."

Folanator asks: How frustrating was it to miss part of your senior season due to injury? Berry: "Oh my God, it was so frustrating. I would watch our team and it was killing me, because I knew I could do so much better. I would stand on the sidelines and get so mad."

HINYG8 asks: How is your arm for a little option pass to Pryor? Berry: "I think I'm pretty good at throwing the football, but I'm not so sure Coach Tressel will think so [laughter]. We will just have to see when I get up there, I guess. I did run the Wildcat in high school, so maybe that would work."

cmquest asks: There is a tremendous tradition of Ohio State tailbacks using the stiffarm. How is yours? Berry: "It's definitely part of my game. I might not be a Beanie Wells, but I use it." kf213003 asks: What do you hope to accomplish in your first year and how many yards can you get? Berry: "I just want to be able to help the team in my first year. I'm not sure what to expect in terms of carries, so I'm just trying to get on the field as much as I can. My goal is to rush for 1,000 yards."

finah asks: Given your talent, do you look to go up the middle or break to the outside, on third down and two? Berry: "My first instinct would be to take it hard up inside to get the first down, but I will read the play and see what will work. I won't give up a first down trying to make a spectacular play."

NorthPoleBuckeye asks: What will you major in at Ohio State? Berry: "I'm looking into sports management or something in the business field."

BizzNasty asks: Did Lamarcus Joyner catch you from behind in the playoffs? Who was the best player at the UnderArmour game? Kobe or Lebron? Favorite musical artist? Will it be tough moving from Florida to Ohio? Berry: "Actually, Lamarcus did catch me from behind, but I wasn't totally healed from my ankle injury. He's a very fast guy and he's very good. I'm more of a 40 guy, rather than a 100-yard guy. The best players at the all-star game were Duron Carter, Petey Smith and Jelani Jenkins. I like LeBron because I'm an Ohio guy now. Lil Wayne for sure. It won't be too tough moving to Ohio and I will adjust pretty fast."

krenzel16 asks: Will your family move to Ohio with you? Which recruits do you talk to the most? Any Florida juniors you think Ohio State can land next year? Did Urban Meyer call you while you were on an official visit to Ohio State? Berry: "Right now there aren't any plans for my family to move to Ohio, but you never know what might happen in the future. I talk to Duron Carter and Jack Mewhort the most. Ohio State has a good shot at Lamarcus Joyner and Jakari Gore. Delvin Jones likes USC, but he said he would visit Ohio State if they invited him. Urban Meyer didn't call me while I was at Ohio State, but he did send me text messages."

buckeye1976 asks: Why does Ohio State connect so well with Florida kids? How would you compare Ohio State, Miami and Florida's practices? Besides family atmosphere, why is Ohio State the best school? Berry: "The Florida guys like the tradition and they're always putting guys in the NFL. I've never seen Florida practice, but most of the big-time schools are pretty similar. Ohio State was the best for me because their style of play really suits me."

buckatborder asks: Do you feel more comfortable running behind a fullback, or in a one-back set? Berry: "I can run in any system, mainly because the back's job is to read the play and find the hole. It doesn't matter to me what the scheme is because my job is still the same."

mbartlet asks: What is your max bench and can you hang with Johnny Simon in the weight room? Berry: "My max bench is 340 pounds, but I could never stay with Simon in the weight room. I don't want none of him."

dozerbuck asks: What's your favorite sandwich? Berry: "My favorite sandwich is probably just peanut butter and jelly. Why do they want to know that [laughing]?"

InTresselTrust asks: Was this the first year you've suffered injuries, or have you been hurt in the past? Berry: "No, this is the first year I've ever been injured at all."

VBCoach asks: As a running back, what are your strengths and weaknesses? Who are you most excited to play with at Ohio State? Are you a fan of the Dolphins, Jags or Bucs? Berry: "My greatest strength is my ability to find a small seam and hit it. I need to work on getting stronger so I can be a better blocker. At Ohio State I'm looking forward to being on the same team with Etienne Sabino, Travis Howard, Terrelle Pryor and Mike Brewster. I'm a Dolphins fan."

UAGoldenBuckeye asks: What makes Doc Tressel such a good coach? Berry: "Doc Tressel is a great coach because of his honesty and his straight-forward approach, in my opinion. He's a very humble guy, and that type of person will gain people's respect and trust. You can tell he knows a lot about the game and I'm looking forward to being coached by him."

WuTang4Eva asks: You come up against a Michigan defensive back on the field, do you run through him or go out of bounds? Berry: "[laughing] I run through him and take it to the house. What did they think I would say [more laughter]? Even if it's Vlad [Emilien], I still gotta give it to him and beat him. He's my boy, but friendship goes away out on the field."

buckeyesorlando asks: After meeting Bill Greene, what do you think his forty time is? Berry: "I'd say like a 4.0 flat [laughing hilariously]. I think Bill is more a power guy than a speed guy [laughing]."

TheKaiser21 asks: Why Ohio State? How long until mom switches to Ohio State? How would you compare the facilities at Ohio State to other schools? What about the game day atmosphere at Ohio State? Are you excited to see USC on the schedule next year? Berry: "Ohio State was just the place I fell in love with on my spring game visit. Every time I came back up here I loved it more and more. My mom is all Buckeye now. She backs me 100 percent and she watches all the Buckeye games with Sabino's mom. The Ohio State facilities are the best I've ever seen. That made a big impression on me. Game day at Ohio State is amazing and I love how crazy the fans get. Seeing a chance to play against USC is a big thing to me. I'm looking forward to playing in big games."

bucklover asks: What did Urban Meyer say to you after you committed to Ohio State? How did they continue to recruit you? Berry: "I don't think he was too happy with me, but I didn't call him right away to find out [laughing]. They were good people and didn't give me any grief, but Ohio State was just the place for me. They kept wanting me to visit, but I kept putting them off until the end."

diznick asks: Would you rather win a national championship, or be the number one pick in the draft? Berry: "That's a trick question [laughing] and I know what I'm supposed to say [more laughter]. Honestly, I would say winning a national championship. But there's a part of me that wants to be the number one pick in the draft. I won't lie to you."

keylime asks: Ohio State plays Miami in a few years. Are you excited to show them what they missed out on? Berry: "That's the one thing I'm looking forward to the most in my career. I can't wait to play against Miami, especially down here."

Stugotsll asks: What does it mean to you to be a Buckeye? Berry: "It means I'll be playing for the best fans, the best coach, and the best program in the country. That's what it means to me."

buckwild23 asks: Do you know Travis Howard and Etienne Sabino well? Berry: "I've known both of them for a while and we've been friends a long time. We talk all the time when they're down here."

ohiostate2002NCM asks: Did any schools make any promises about you starting if you went there? Berry: "Minnesota promised me I would start, and that was the first time I ever spoke to them. All the smaller D-I schools told me I would be their starter from the first day I got there, and I thought that was pretty funny."

BruteBuckeye asks: What are your expectations for your first year? Berry: "I'm not sure what to expect, to be honest. I just want to earn a chance to get on the field and contribute right away. I respect the other backs, but I want to play just like they do. They told me the best player will play."

phatassjungle asks: Will Ohio State win a national championship in 2010 or 2011? Berry: "I don't know about 2010 or 2011, but I'm sure we are going to win it all this year. We will absolutely win a national championship with this group of guys."

tennbuck27 asks: Do you have any friends that play for Miami and are you excited to play against them? Berry: "Actually, I do have a lot of friends on that team and we all can't wait to play against each other. We are already talking stuff to each other."

GoBucksChicago asks: Are you ready to go against Taylor Mays from USC? Berry: "Yes, I'm ready for him and his team. I'm looking forward to playing against such a big-time player. I want to see what I can do against him because he is a great player, but he has to catch me first [laughing]."

luvosu asks: What weight do you see yourself playing at for Ohio State? Berry: "The coaches want me playing at 205-210 pounds. We just talked about that last week."

mrvbsgb asks: What school came in second for you? Berry: "I would say Florida and Mississippi, but it wasn't even close at all. I was always all Ohio State."

tindy1 asks: Do you feel any pressure coming in after Beanie Wells was so great? Berry: "I'm just hyped and pumped about the opportunity. I don't feel any pressure right now, but I'm sure I'll be nervous when I first get there."

Bucknut27 asks: One recruiting service has you listed as a student-athlete with academic problems. Are you qualified? Berry: "There is nothing to worry about. I talked to Ohio State and they said my test score was good, and I need to keep my grades where they are. I'm good to go."

Bill Greene asks: Will I see you playing on Sundays some day? Is your mom as good a cook as we keep hearing? Berry: "That's my ultimate goal in life. If I make it to the NFL, I can do a lot for my mom. Yes, she is the greatest cook in the world. All the guys love coming to my house to eat."


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