Sept. 11, 2006
With one year of experience under Coach Mark McHale’s system and with the offensive line back to full strength, the Seminoles have high hopes for this year. One player in particular itching to get back in action is senior offensive guard Cory Niblock. He has had a very productive off season and is on track to be 100 percent for the season opener. Niblock sat down with seminoles.com and to get his thoughts about the offensive line’s progress.
How did you injure your knee last year and how has the recovery process gone?
I injured it on the last play of the Clemson game. I was going down field to set a block and hyper-extended it. Rehab is really tough. I’m in there five times a week working in the training room trying to get it back to 100
You are one of a few guys on the offensive line who can play more than one position. Is that something Coach McHale will be able to incorporate this season?
Yes, considering what happened last year, he’s going to be ready to shuffle the line around in any which way that best suits us and the system. We have to be ready for any changes. I am willing and able to play guard and tackle.
You are listed at guard now, but last year you played tackle as well. Having played both positions, which one do you prefer and what are the differences in responsibilities?
I definitely prefer playing guard. Tackle requires more skill. There’s more open space, it’s one-on-one and you’re on an island, but it is less physical than guard. Guard is more physical inside and that’s what I prefer.
What’s more challenging, pass blocking or run blocking?
I think pass blocking is the hardest. I would definitely prefer run blocking. Pass blocking is more sitting back and taking the punch and countering their moves. Run blocking is more establishing where you want them to go and you’re more in attack mode.
What has the offensive line done to help bring the running game along?
We were in the weight room a lot more. We dedicated ourselves to the weight room and conditioning and this is our second year in the system, so we feel more comfortable, more confident in ourselves and the play of the running game. Last year we basically had a month before the season to get the system down, but now we have a year of experience with it.
What were the main reasons you chose to play football here at Florida State?
Coach Bowden and the tradition.
You are the most experienced offensive line-man on the team. Have you settled into more of a leadership role?
Definitely, I have plenty of game experience and I try and help out the younger guys as much as possible and lead them and show them the way.
Who would you say is your closest teammate/teammates? When you guys hang out, what are some of the things you do?
My roommates on the road, D.J. (Norris), (John) Frady and (David) Overmyer. Those are my closest friends and we usually battle it out on Xbox and Play Station, mostly video games for sure.
What is your pre-game routine? Do you do anything for good luck?
I don’t do anything for good luck. I just listen to music and try and focus and block everything out. I don’t have any superstitions or anything.
What are some of your favorite things to do outside of football?
Playing video games. Halo2 and Madden are my favorites. I like dogs, I have two.
Name one thing that really scares you.
Definitely heights. I hate heights, and I hate flying. Every time I hate it. The only time we ever take the bus is to Jacksonville or Gainesville, we even fly to Miami. But this year is good because we have eight home
games. Before I fly I just try to suck it up, say my prayers and close my eyes. I close the window shade as well. The first time I ever flew in my life was my freshman year when we went to play Iowa State in Kansas City. It was the first time I’d ever flown, but I made the mistake of telling people about my fear and I paid for it.
Name two people you would like to meet past and present.
Richard Pryor, I believe he is the best comedian of all time. I’d really like to meet him. President Bush would be my other choice.
If you had to sing one song in front of an entire crowd of people, what would it be?
Nothing, I’m not singing on a microphone in front of people. I’ll sing in the bathroom at home, but that’s as far as it goes.
Where is your favorite place to be? Why?
In my bed, I like to relax, and relax more.
By Ben Murphy Sports Information Student Assistant