Justin Durant Conference Call


(where did you think you'd be drafted?) "I wasn't sure. I had heard a lot of things from first to fourth (rounds). So I was just in the dark just watching, just trying to see who was going to draft me."

(what kind of interest had the Jaguars expressed in you?) "They expressed a pretty good bit of interest. I talked to them at the Combine. I had talked to Coach (Mark) Duffner, the linebackers coach a couple times throughout the process and I could tell that they had a liking for me but I wasn't sure exactly where I was going to go."

(how much do you know about the Jaguars?) "I haven't really gotten a chance just to sit down and evaluate how they do defensively but I know they do the 4-3, they have a great defensive line, some great linebackers and I'll think I can fit in perfectly."

(what have the Jaguars told you since drafting you? Have they told you what your role will be?) "Not exactly. They just confirmed some dates as far as mini-camp and when I have to report and things like that and that they were happy to have me. I'm happy to be a Jaguar and I'm ready to get it started."

(are you an inside or outside linebacker?) "I'm thinking I'm going to be on the outside just as far as what coach and I have talked about. I think that's going to be my fit down there in Jacksonville."

(weakside?) "Yes, sir."

(tell us about you) "I'm originally from Florence, South Carolina. I grew up in a single-parent household. My father was always there though. He was always there as far as supporting me and everything like that. But my mom, she's a real strong woman. She taught me all about values and my morals that I have right now. She's taught me how to work hard and how to be a great person. I came up playing football since the age of eight, playing linebacker exclusively. I've played a little bit of running back but as far as exclusives go, I just played linebacker. Once I got to high school, I just played linebacker. I'm so excited right now. My mind is just racing. It's real tough right now. But my mom, she's a real strong woman. She just taught me a whole of things about life and how to be a great person and I think I'm going to bring some of that down there. I'm going to bring the things I learned at Hampton as far as working hard, studying film and playing to the best of my ability. I'm going to bring some of that down there and I think I'm going to be an attribute to the team."

(do you have a brother at North Carolina?) "Yeah, that's my brother Danny Durant. He played at North Carolina."

(with one of you attending a major college and the other attending a small college, did you have a sibling rivalry? What was that like for you?) "No, it wasn't really a sibling rivalry. He helped me out a lot through my college process as far as watching film. He used to watch film on me. He came to a couple games. After he got done with his college career, he had some time to come to a couple games. He watch me, showed me and told me things about what I was doing, things that would help me as far as like what he saw while he was in college and while he was up in the CFL, things to make me better. So I appreciate everything that he did for me."

(were you recruited by any of the major colleges coming out of high school?) "Actually I wasn't. I didn't get any D-I scholarships coming out of high school. I just got a couple of Division I-AA scholarships and I decided to go to Hampton."

(being from Florence, S.C. did you know Lawrence Timmons?) "Oh yeah, we went to the same high school. We played on the team and everything like that. I'm so happy for him, too. Once his name got called, I was happy and excited for him because we went through a lot in high school as far as playing on the same team and playing on the same defense, aside from going through the same struggles. I was so happy for him once he got drafted."

(you must have been on a pretty good team?) "Yeah, we were pretty good. We made it probably the second, third round of the playoffs each year when both of us were there."

(why do you think you were ignored by the major colleges coming out of high school?) "Actually, I'm not sure. Coming out, I was top 15 recruit in the state and I made the North-South Shrine Game which is the best game that the recruits out of South Carolina can go to. So, I don't really have a clue as far as the recruiting process goes. I guess they didn't see something in me that Division I-A prospects did. So I just had to go with what I was dealt with and I made the best out of it."

(what do you run the 40-yard dash in?) "I ran a 4.51 at the Combine. The fastest I've run is a 4.49, so probably a 4.5 range."

(is playing safety a possibility?) "I'm not sure. They haven't talked to me about playing safety. They just talked to me about playing linebacker. I just talked to Coach Duffner. We've had some real good conversations over this whole process. So I don't think safety is an option but if it is, I'm ready to play that, too."

(how much special teams did you play?) "I played a couple years of special teams. My first two years at Hampton I basically played on all four special teams (units). In the past couple of years, my coach has kind of held me out from playing special teams I guess because I was too much of an asset to the team. But I'm willing to play and I know that playing special teams is going to be my ticket into making it into the NFL."

(do you think your size hurt you coming out of high school? How big were you coming out of high school?) "I was probably around 225, 230 (pounds). I don't think it was really a problem. I'm not exactly sure. I think I played well enough to possibly make it to the I-A ranks to, at least, to better prepare my body for that, at least for the redshirt year. But that's all in the past. I'm not really thinking about it anymore. I'm just ready to go ahead and be a Jaguar."

(what short linebacker is your hero?) "I'd probably say Derrick Brooks. He's not really the tallest linebacker but he gets the job done. That's what I really think it's about as far as just going out there and playing hard and getting the job done. He does a lot for his team and I think that I can bring some of the same things to my team."

(what do you think this means for Hampton?) "I think this is huge as far as me going as early as I did on the first day. It just shows that we have a lot of talent at Hampton. We put in a whole lot of work. With the guys that are also coming out of my class, they're some of the best athletes that I've seen while I've been playing. So I think that the teams and the scouts are going to realize that. Once they take a look at the film and once they put their draft boards together, they're going to realize that Hampton has some of the best talents that they've seen."

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