Sammie Lee Hill Interview Defensive End - Stillman 9/10/08 By: Tony Conty *Click Here to listen to the full audio of this interview. Tony Conty: What led you to Stillman out of West Blocton, Alabama? Sammie Lee Hill: Well, I was overlooked by a whole lot of schools, so my Defensive Coordinator kept calling and calling and that was the last place…my last chance to get a full school scholarship and play football in college. Tony Conty: Looking at your history, you came out of high school weighing about 270, but what is your current height, weight, and 40 time? Sammie Lee Hill: 6’4, about 325, and around a 5.00 flat. Tony Conty: You managed to put on some good weight over the years. Describe the workout routine that helps you maintain optimum size and strength at this point of your career. Sammie Lee Hill: Pretty much just basic stuff. Bench Press, a lot of running, Squats, and Cleaning: all your basic lifts. Tony Conty: Talking about your scheme now and what you can see, could you see yourself in either a 3-4 or a 4-3 alignment? Sammie Lee Hill: Yes, sir, I can. Tony Conty: You went up in Tackles and Tackles for Loss last year and had a fair amount of sacks. Do you pay much attention to stats over the year? Sammie Lee Hill: Yes, sir. Tony Conty: Both you and teammate Dre’Mail Hardin received a few preseason honors. Did you see more attention from opposing offensive linemen coming your way in these first two weeks? Sammie Lee Hill: Yes, sir, I do. There’s a lot less running the ball my way. They do not run the ball my way pretty much. Tony Conty: We are doing research on you. One of the major headlines you received involved you and two teammates (one current and one former) saving a man from a burning building. Describe the circumstances that led that to happen. Sammie Lee Hill: Just one night on our way home, we were seeing a burning house on fire. My teammate told me to turn around, because someone might need help and, sure enough, there was a lady outside saying that her father needs help. All we could do was put our hands over our faces and hope that we didn’t get hurt. We looked up, and, well, it was a blessing that we could grab him and protect ourselves so we all were safe? Tony Conty: How was the local attention after that, because obviously it was a big story in Alabama? Sammie Lee Hill: There was a lot of media and press coming around after that happened. It was OK. I felt like I didn’t need all that, because I would want somebody to do the same thing for my father or mother in the same situation. Tony Conty: Did the Webb family contact you after the incident, or was it one of those things were you did your part and that was the end of it? Sammie Lee Hill: They contacted us and we got everyone together. They wanted to talk to us. It just blew over, I guess. Tony Conty: That was an interesting story. Back to football. This is a tough year to be a Defensive Tackle in this draft class. Do you feed off of that pressure with the odds stacked against you, being from a small school? Sammie Lee Hill: You have to, because of the simple fact that you are...I don’t want to say overlooked, because you have D-I players that are supposed to be better, but I gotta make it happen, being from a small school. Tony Conty: So, What are your individual goals for this season? Sammie Lee Hill: Working on my passing game, getting the pass rush down as best I can, and getting my numbers as high as I possibly can? Tony Conty: So, someone like yourself: a lot of I-AA and Division II players make their name at the Combine. Do you think that 40 times, bench press numbers, and the like are overrated? Sammie Lee Hill: Not at all, sir. Tony Conty: So, in other words you are going to impress people next year, right? Sammie Lee Hill: Try my best to. Tony Conty: The team as a whole: You started the season with a great win against Miles, but yesterday you came up on the short end of a physical running game against Jackson State. What should we expect the rest of the season from the Tigers? Sammie Lee Hill: Trying our best to stop and we are definitely trying to win the SIAC Conference. Tony Conty: Describe a day or a week of practice after a win as opposed to a loss. Sammie Lee Hill: After a win, we stick to the routine and it is not as hostile, but, on the losing end, it’s basically the same thing, but you have to work on your mistakes and learn from what you did wrong. Tony Conty: Give a shout out to another member or two of your team that deserve attention from the draftniks. Obviously, you are the one from Stillman that they are talking about, but who else deserves attention? Sammie Lee Hill: Well, you know Dre’Mail. Does Dre’Mail count? Tony Conty: Yes Sammie Lee Hill: OK, I would say Dre’Mail, Darren Mack. He got hurt, but if it wasn’t him, Deavion McCoy. Tony Conty: Who are the most dominant Offensive Linemen that you have faced in your career? Sammie Lee Hill: The Offensive Tackle from Tuskegee last year. I can’t think of his name. He was a Right Tackle for Tuskegee last year. Tony Conty: I’d have to look that up, too, actually. What current Defensive Lineman in the NFL do you admire? Sammie Lee Hill: Being honest, being a Defensive End right now, I usually watch Defensive Ends. I know, like, Warren Sapp. Tony Conty: So, where do you see yourself at the next level. Do you see yourself inside or outside? Sammie Lee Hill: Being honest, it really doesn’t matter. Whatever I have to do, I’ll just have to do it. Tony Conty: Now, we always like to bring up current issues in the NFL to prospective players just to get their opinion. Talk about the penalties that you have seen at the college level for excessive celebration. Do you think that they’ve gone too far? Sammie Lee Hill: Well, I saw the game with BYU against Washington. As far as that, sometimes you make a big play and you just can’t control yourself. If it’s someone doing back flips, a Superman, or something like that, I could understand that. But something like Washington against BYU…I don’t think you should be penalized for things like that. Tony Conty: One of the buzzwords, when we at the site analyze players, is character. Talk about the focus that Roger Goodell and the NFL have on character. Sammie Lee Hill: Yes, sir, because if you are presenting money, a lot of money, to these players, character does play a big role. I’m sure that he doesn’t want to go out there and pay these players all that money just so they can mess it up. I think that he’s been handling it really well. Tony Conty: Self-promote. Why should teams pick you before some of the other Defensive Tackles that they may have listed ahead of you? Sammie Lee Hill: For my size, I have tremendous athletic ability, I would say. I am hungry to play NFL Football.