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Senior Bowl 2019 Interview – Rock Ya-Sin

Steve Shoup

Rock Ya-Sin – CB (Temple)

Measurables:  Hgt:  5’ 11 ¾”  Wgt:  189 lbs.  Hand:  9 ¾”     Arm:  32 ⅜”     Wing:  76 ¾“

 

PROFILE: 

SENIOR (2018): Was a mid-year transfer in January from Presbyterian College after the Blue Hose decided to move down from FCS to DII … was awarded a coveted single-digit jersey in the summer (Temple awards single-digits to the nine toughest players on the team) … fourth in the conference and tied for 14th in the nation in passes defended (12) … made first career start in FBS for Temple against Villanova.
JUNIOR (2017) AT PRESBYTERIAN: Started all 11 games at cornerback … finished the year a first-team all-Big South selection … recorded a school record five interceptions … also recovered two fumbles while registering 49 total tackles, fourth most on the team … career-high seven tackles against Saint Francis.
SOPHOMORE (2016) AT PRESBYTERIAN: Started all 11 games at cornerback … totaled 31 tackles, including 2.0 tackles for loss, with a team-high nine pass breakups and a fumble recovery … returned a fumble recovery 61 yards for a touchdown at South Alabama, Presbyterian’s only defensive score of the year … made a career-high seven tackles in the season finale at South Alabama.
FRESHMAN (2015) AT PRESBYTERIAN: Played in every game, making two starts at cornerback … recorded 15 tackles and two pass breakups … recorded a career-high six tackles in a start at Western Carolina … also made three tackles at both Miami (OH) and Liberty.

On his reaction to being asked to participate in the Senior Bowl

 

It’s a blessing! It’s a blessing just to be here. You got the best college football players in the country. So, for me to be here, to be a part of this conversation, it’s a blessing.

 

On what was the best piece of advice he received from coaches and former players about how to approach the Senior Bowl opportunity

 

Just come out and be myself. Come out and compete every day. Get better – just do what I do. Just need to get better.

 

On what he has heard from NFL scouts and coaches about things that he needs to work on

 

They wanted to see me play some off-man. We didn’t do a lot of that at Temple. They want to see me play some more zone. They wanted to see me come out and compete. That’s all they’re asking.

 

On how he would describe his ability in press-man coverage given that he did that a lot at Temple

 

I feel like I’m a dominant press-man corner. I feel like I play with sound technique.

 

On how he came to develop his ability to play man-to-man strong

 

I feel like it started somewhat with wrestling (he was a two-time state champion wrestler at Southwest Dekalb High School in Decatur, Georgia), being a one-on-one sport. I love the team aspect of football but sometimes it turns on one of my matchups. Not being afraid to go compete one-on-one with a guy comes from wrestling.

 

On whether he has given any thought about which NFL teams might be a good fit for him given his particular skill set

 

Not really.  I kinda watch players. I haven’t really looked at a team. It’s not in my control. God won’t let me sign or be drafted or anything – it won’t be in my control at all, it will be in his.

 

On who might be a couple of players that he has watched and perhaps tries to model his game after

 

Well, the thing about playing cornerback is that all of us are like different sizes, different speeds, different amount of athletic ability, different arm lengths, so it’s hard to model myself after any one player. But I’ll take bits and pieces from each player and the techniques that they use. I watch Stephon Gilmore, Ronald Darby – I watch Patrick Peterson, Casey Hayward, A.J. Bouye. I watch a lot of different corners.

 

On how he feels about the importance of a cornerback’s responsibility to play run defense

 

Playing at Temple, it was all about being tough. You have to come out and rough it and make tackles. As a corner, we’re asked to tackle.  I feel like it’s that important.

 

On his physical approach to playing on the outside and the pride he takes in that style of play

 

Yes sir, definitely. That was just the culture there (at Temple) – coming out and being dominant, in pass defense, in run defense, whatever.

 

On what he would like to showcase to NFL scouts during Senior Bowl week beyond the X’s and O’s – what he brings to the table

 

I just want to come here and compete. Just compete with best guys at the highest level and show that I belong here – that I’m a competitor and I belong here.



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