Paul Mckiever | South Carolina State | DT/OG
Twitter: paul_wezzy | Instagram: Pauljr76
Q: Tell us about your college (or pro) career and what the recruiting/scouting process was like. Why did you choose South Carolina State?
A: I chose state because they were willing to give me a shot even though my grades weren’t up to par and every other big D1 school that recruited me wanted me to go the juco route and honestly that wasn’t for me so they told me I could come but have to sit out the first year until I’m eligible. Also the decision was easier because they put players in the league every single year so that was a no brainer for me.
Q: What would you consider to be your biggest accomplishment in your sports career so far?
A: I’m not much of a individual award guy even though I have a few but I’ll have to say finally getting that ring my senior year after being so close every year
Q: What do you consider to be one of the more important things you learned from the coaching staff while playing at South Carolina State?
A: I would have to say game planning because coming in I was already a film junkie an knew what to look for as far as in what every team liked doing out of each formation,they also taught me that when you see things don’t keep them to yourself if you know the exact play there running call it out and put your players in the right position to make the play so I literally studied and learned what the linebackers an DB’s were doing on every play because if I know where you should be an the ball is forced there I’m going to close the gap down so it’ll make your job easier every time.
Q: How was your career impacted due to the 2020 pandemic and what have you learned from the adversity?
A: My career was affected tragically, didn’t have pro day, couldn’t get into any camps, had alot of looks but due to Covid they couldn’t bring me in. This has taught me a lot I haven’t been around my family in 5 years longer than a month. I’ve been home for 8 months now I’ve seen them struggle due to this crisis and really made me go harder with what I love and train that much harder so I can finally be the supporter that I’ve always said I will be I’ve been patient so I know it’s my time now with this new opportunity.
Q: What was your major and what are your plans if football doesn’t work out?
A: Family Consumer Science, I don’t think like that honestly because I know I have it in me and never gave up on anything but I do have other plans besides or after football and that is to give back so that means I definitely want to go into coaching.
Q: What would your current/past teammates say about you and your qualities?
A: They would definitely say I’m the littest teammate always keep you motivated and ready to go to war, also a great leader and nobody outsmarts me when it’s time to practice or play because I call out majority of the plays pre-snap to make their jobs easier so we feed off of each other
Q: What has been one of the most memorable plays of your career at any level?
A: I would definitely have to say my sophomore year when we were playing NC Central we up by 2 in the 4th quarter and they decided to go for the 2pt conversion, the quarterback rolled out an i was in pursuit he tried to dive over the goal Line to score and my teammates Alex brown cut his legs and he went flying but he was still going to land in the end zone so once I realized that I just caught him out the air and slammed him the other way to stop him from scoring and as soon as the game was over my phone was blowing up everybody was sending me the video and it made sportscenter top plays they call it the wwe tag team slam.
My career was affected tragically, didn’t have pro day, couldn’t get into any camps, had alot of looks but due to Covid they couldn’t bring me in.
~ Paul McKiever
Q: What has been your biggest challenge and how do you manage it?
A: My biggest challenge is really the pandemic because it literally stopped the whole world, but the way I managed it was to find other skills and made me look at life differently and showed me how much football really means to me having not being apart of a team for a season haven’t done that since I first started playing football at 10 so it’s very mind blowing but it’s going to work itself out as long as you put God first and never give up.
Q: If you could compare yourself to a pro athlete, who would that be and why?
A: I would say Akeem Hicks because we are both film junkies and we are strong but not the fastest but definitely have good speed to get down the line like we play chess matches if we know where the ball is going and it’s hitting the backside gap but we kno the blocks is trying to be aggressive and drive we are going to use his momentum against him and defeat him so we can make that play for a loss instead of the linebacker making it for a 2 or maybe 3 yard gain.
Q: What is your biggest strength that you bring to a professional team and why should pro scouts consider you?
A: I would have to say my football IQ and hands, I feel as if a pro team should consider me because I’m versatile I can play Defensive Tackle or end and definitely Nose also I can play every special teams like I did in college and I can play anywhere on the O-line honestly.
Q: Are you involved in mentoring, a charity or do you “give back” or ”pay it forward” in your community?
A: Well I am mentoring a few kids from my hometown and I go out to every event possible to speak or just show my face because I know that just makes the kids day.
Q: How are you preparing for the 2021 National Scouting Combine and what are your goals?
A: I am training harder than ever really trying to improve on my numbers hopefully 40 a low 5.0 at 330 and bench some where in the 25-30 range.
Q: What would be your ultimate achievement?
A: To actually get a chance to show my ability and when I get that I promise that one team will love me and how much I bring to the table.
Q: What do you enjoy doing when not playing football?
A: I enjoy being around family going out playing games. I’m very competitive and I also love playing spades.
Q: If you could make a positive impact on all of society what would it be and why?
A: I would say since so many kids love sports I would have to say hold annual camps also and promote school. Where I’m from a lot of kids don’t make it out or have a fair chance so I’ll just like to show them it doesn’t matter where you come from I’m a living testimony. Just give them something to be proud of and forward too so they could stay out of trouble.
Q: Who is or has been the most influential person in your life?
A: My high school coach Jerry brown he changed my life I went from my freshman year before he arrived didn’t pass but one class my first semester when he got there that 2nd semester he said if you fell another class you will not play a down for me that’s all I really needed to hear, he taught me discipline and how to become a man off the field but on the field he made me be a student of the game he said do you want to be a high school could’ve been or play on Sundays and of course I choose Sundays so every since then he put everything on my back and molded me first and last one in the film room weight room and off the field extra every single practice. So he pushed me and made it muscle memory and made the game easier at every level.
Q: What is something unique about you that people would find interesting?
A: I would have to say how big and athletic I am I played almost every sport, I played football and basketball of course I did track&field also people were shocked when I said I’m a 300 pound soccer player and it also got crazier when I mentioned I played tennis and was a top doubles player.
Q: What is your dream job?
A: That’s easy The NFL with no hesitation.