NET Scout: You played OT at a high level for the Beavers, but you're now being projected as a Guard in the NFL. Were you surprised by scouts asking you to change positions?
Andy Levitre: I know from my height I'd be projected as a guard, but some scouts are saying that I could still play OT, but maybe not as a starter. They feel that I'd be good enough to start if someone went down with an injury and that I could play both G and OT.
NS: What changes
in your game will you need to make for the transition inside?
AL: I have to be a lot more stout on the inside because you're dealing with bigger players. The initial contact off the snap is important and I need to be explosive. I can definitely adapt to it. I just need more reps and need to get back into it. I've played there before so, I know I can do it.
NS: What do you think
are the strengths of your game and what do you need to work on?
AL: Strengths- I'm a technician, and that helps me be successful. I have tight hands when I run block. Have a decent punch and pretty good footwork. I never take plays off and have a great motor.
Weaknesses- I need to work on angles in my pass set, to be more explosive off the ball in run plays so I can knock them off the ball.
NS: At Oregon State,
you beat USC twice. Was that among your best memories from your time there?
AL: It's definitely one of the top 3 things I will remember there. We won the Civil War last year, too, so that was another one.
NS: What about personal
achievements. I know you were named First Team All Pac-10 and 2nd Team All American
by the AP, but maybe something that the average fan might not know.
AL: I was elected by my team as co-team captain this year. That meant a lot to me; more than some of my other awards because it showed that my teammates viewed me as a leader. Also finishing my finance degree was a big accomplishment. Getting more than just football out of my career here was something I wanted to do.
NS: As they do every
year, USC has a ton of NFL talent on defense. But OSU's offensive line dominated
the LOS, opening holes for Jacquizz Rodgers all night. Did you feel like you
earned some national respect with a performance like that?
AL: Yeah, we never really thought of it like that, but I think that game, both sides of the ball came out focused and we really wanted to win that game. All around we played a great game and we didn't have that many flaws and that's why we won. I guess that we got some respect and got our RB nationally recognized. For offensive lineman, your RB's production is also a reflection on you, so we had a good night.
NS: You just got
back from the Senior Bowl. Tell us about your impressions of the whole week
and how you thought you did?
AL: Monday was crazy; two of the longest day's I've had in awhile. There was something to do every minute. Not that it was hard, but it was just different. I was just soaking it up, getting interviewed, things like that. I liked being there and seeing all the pro teams, coaches and players from across the country. It's weird because you see all the coaches on T.V. and then they're standing right next to you. I guess I'll get used to that.
As for practices, I was rusty the first day, just getting used to moving around. I was getting back into that Guard mode because I hadn't played there in awhile. I made some mistakes in some one-on-ones, but I'll learn from that. It gives me something to work on and a goal to get better. I thought as the week went on I got better because I hadn't played LG or RT in a long time. I thought I did a pretty good job for not playing those positions in awhile.
There was a lot of talent out there. I had some good team periods. I thought my play in the game was a lot better and very solid. I think I maybe made two mistakes in about 40 snaps during the actual game.
NS: Were there any
specific NFL teams showing interest in you in Mobile?
AL: There was some informal meetings. Scouts would come up to me in the hallway and ask me questions. The Seattle Seahawks staff asked me some questions. I also met with New England's scouts, and the way he was talking to me leads me to believe they had some real interest. Some scouts and personnel guys would just interview me and ask general questions, but New England was telling me where I'd fit in with them, etc. The Bears seemed interested, too.
NS: Seattle and Chicago are teams that are rumored to be looking at OL heavily in this Draft. As a player, do you pay attention to that, or do you not worry about what teams are supposed to be looking at?
AL: My agent lets me know who has a real interest and will tell me that certain teams are expecting to lose some guys or are trying to upgrade, but I like to keep my options open. I'm not greedy with a specific team that I want to go to. I'll be happy to go anywhere.
NS: Who were the
best players you went up against at the Senior Bowl?
AL: Raji (Boston College DT B.J. Raji) was pretty good. The Purdue DT (Alex Magee) was good. Larry English (DE) from NIU is pretty good at getting upfield. Those were the three I was most impressed with, as for practice. The kid from Richmond (DE Lawrence Sidbury) was also good.
NS: Did you talk
to former OSU lineman Roy Scheuning and Kyle DeVan about what to expect from
the Draft process and the NFL, in general?
AL: I haven't. I talked to Kyle a little and Roy left me a message. I will see him next week before I head out for the Combine. Basically I've got text messages from people saying to be myself and do what I do, that kind of thing. I try not to get overly excited for things and just want to work hard.
NS: The Combine is
coming up. Tell us where you're preparing at and what we can expect from your
AL: I'm in Denver training with a guy that does training for lots of NFL guys. He's a good guy and knows what he's talking about. He explains everything and how it translates to the field or an drill, so he's a knowledgeable guy. I feel like I'm becoming more athletic and feel good about what I've done.
I don't think I'll be breaking any records or anything at the Combine, but I think I'll do well. We haven't done any timed 40's yet. We've been working on "L" drills, 5-10-5, that kind of thing. We're not really worried about the clock. We're worried about fundamentals and technique right now and we'll worry about time later. We're making sure we do the right thing and the results will come from that.
NS: What will an
NFL team be getting when they Draft you?
AL: A well rounded person who is very respectful that's a hard worker. They'll get a great technician, a guy who loves football and wants to get better every day. I don't think they'll regret picking me. I think they'll get versatility, too, because I can play OT and G.
NS: Did you have
a favorite team growing up?
AL: I never really had a favorite, but I grew up watching the Niners and Raiders because of where I grew up. I never really picked a favorite team, but over the past few years I've followed the Colts. I like the way they run their offense. I like the way Peyton Manning's composure is and how consistent their offense is.
NS: How difficult
to you think it would be for a rookie OL to deal with all the audibles in a
system like Manning's?
AL: As long as you know the playbook it shouldn't be a problem. It will be a challenge to learn the whole system, but it should become easier as time goes on.
NS: What NFL players
to you admire or pattern your game after?
AL: I like to think of myself as my own player. I like watching the technique, the things I'm taught and then to watch them play on Sunday. I'll watch a player and look at what they're doing, if it's what we're being taught, that kind of thing.
NS: Can you give
us a glimpse of some other OSU players that might make an NFL impact in the
AL: Both the Rodgers brothers (RB Jacquizz Rodgers, WR James Rodgers). They're young and have had some success so far. As long as they keep it up they'll be fine. Here's a name for you, DT Steven Paea! That guy is probably the most explosive, well put together D-lineman I've ever seen in my five years in college. He didn't get too much notice this year, but he's going to be a great player and a high draft pick.