BC Interruption: What do you think 2010 has in store for the Boston College football team? Is this program on the right track?
Mike McLaughlin: Yeah, absolutely. If you look at the guys coming back, and of course, the man will be back. The man … Number 94. Everybody’s prayers should be out for him and mine certainly are. Even still, there are some great players. You have Luke Kuechly, what he did last year. He’s just going to get better.
We've got great coaches. Coach McGovern - our new DC this past year - he did a great job last year and I really think he’s going to be one of the best in the country over the next few years. You have leaders like Wes Davis. And then, of course, Dave Shinskie, he’s only going to get better too. To me, you have one of the best running backs in the country in Montel [Harris]. I think they’re going to make some noise.
BCI: Let’s shift focus to this week’s Combine. What are you doing to prepare for the Combine?
MM: I’ve been down here at Athletic Edge working out with Mike Gough. This is week 8 now I’ve been down here. We get up Monday through Friday every morning and do our running stuff. Getting the technique down for all those drills and all that stuff. It’s all technique that you have to learn and it takes a few weeks. Once you get that down, it’s just repetition and repping that stuff out non-stop until you kind of get sick of it. In the afternoons, we’ve just been lifting.
It’s a little different style than some of the stuff you do to get ready for an actual football season or an actual football game. It’s a little different twist to it to get ready for these tests.
BCI: What is your favorite Combine event? What will scouts be most impressed by?
MM: My favorite Combine event is probably going to have to be the bench press (laughs). I sound like a true meat head there (laughs) ...
I think I’m going to show the scouts how athletic I am. I think some of them are questioning my athletic ability a little bit. If these times down here … If I can post anywhere close to what I’m doing right now then I think I can make a real good impression on some of the coaches and scouts down there with my quickness and athletic ability.
BCI: Do you talk to any of the BC players that came before you on advice on how to prepare for the Combine and the NFL Draft?
MM: There are just a few guys. Brian Toal. I talk to all the time about stuff. Rob Francois. I stay close with some of the linebackers that I’ve played with in the past. I kind of know what’s coming. I haven’t really asked them specifically about what’s going to go on here just because you hear it from so many other guys. Especially being down here. You are kind of getting prepped for it. It’s like studying for an exam over and over and over for weeks and weeks. You really get it pounded into your head what’s going to happen and what to be ready for.
BCI: When you get to the NFL, you’ll be the third member of your family to play professional football ...
MM: Yeah. Hopefully it works out.
BCI: What sort of advice has your family given you that has helped you prepare for a career in professional football?
MM: My dad and my uncle - who both played pro football - have been great through my whole career. Especially my dad. He has been the one person I always look to for any advice. They are just typical, hard-work, blue-collar guys that I’ve watched growing up my whole life and seen how what kind of work effort they’ve had. Whether it be running their business that they have or just teaching me about football and teaching me about how to attack things. I think it’s more just the hard-working mentality that they’ve given me has definitely proved to be the best stuff they’ve given me.
BCI: Did you have a favorite NFL team growing up? If you could play for any team, which team would that be?
MM: I’m a Massachusetts guy, so it would definitely have to be the Patriots.
I tell some people that my house is about 30 minutes away from Alumni, and then it’s about 45 minutes from Gillette. I think it would be pretty cool if I could say that I played my college career at BC, which is 30 minutes away, and then go down the street and play for the New England Patriots who have done pretty well over the past few years.
BCI: Have any teams expressed an interest in you? Which ones?
MM: At the East-West game, that’s like a little warm-up for the Combine I guess you could say. I probably had a dozen interviews or so with different teams. The Panthers, Dolphins, Steelers, Jets just to name a few. To be honest with you, I can’t remember all of them. Nothing crazy yet. I think it’s more just getting to know you just a little bit. I think the most important stuff is going to be within the next week or so here.
BCI: After football, what do you want to accomplish in life? Where do you see your career going after your playing career is over? Coaching? Broadcasting? Front Office? Or something completely outside of football?
MM: One thing I definitely want to do is be a dad and a husband and be a family man. That’s been passed on through my family. I have great family roots and I’m lucky enough to have that. I see how cool it is to spend time with my family all the time. It’s definitely something I want to be in the future.
As far as a career outside of football … when I’m done playing, hopefully which will be in a little while but we’ll see. But if not, I’ll probably stay within sports and stay within football. I just love the game so much. I think I could be a decent coach or somehow stay in the pipeline a little bit.
BCI: Mike, best of luck in the Combine this week. All of BC is pulling for you.
MM: I appreciate it. Thanks for the time and thanks for the opportunity.
Special thanks to Shawn at X-A-M Sports and Entertainment for helping to set up the interview.