Jaguars DE, Austen Lane Interview
Austen Lane played college football at Murray State. He entered the 2010 NFL Draft, and was selected in the 5th round by the Jacksonville Jaguars. He is on the Jacksonville Jaguars roster. He got his first sack against the Saints in 2011, but was placed on IR later in the season. He is one of the funniest players on twitter, and he hopes to produce next season. This was done after the 2010 NFL season.
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Announcement : Hello, my name is Max Strauss with http://prointerviews.org/, http://facebook.com/ProInterviews/, http://twitter.com/ProInterviews/. Please be a part of Pro Interviews. I’d like to welcome you to the interview with Austen Lane. Lane attended Murray State and set school records while he was there. He accumulated 29 sacks and 55 TFLs in his collegiate career. To accompany that, he totaled 211 tackles. He entered the 2010 NFL Draft and was drafted in the 5th round, 153rd overall by the Jacksonville Jaguars. He accumulated 20 tackles and 2 tackles for a loss in his rookie season. Let’s get on with the interview! I hope you enjoy the collages also! If you scroll down, you can read some of his answers to personal questions!
Strauss : Why do you really use twitter?
Lane : Basically it wasn’t my choice to use twitter, but my PR person told me to use it. Mainly I use it for, is getting a good laugh and trying to communicate with my fans. I don’t want to take it too seriously. I think if there’s something on there. I’ll try to be funny and make people laugh, just because I don’t think people are too concerned with what I’m eating for breakfast, dinner, or what’s in my day. I just try to keep it funny.
Strauss : What’s the funniest thing you’ve ever tweeted?
Lane : Hahaha. The funniest thing I’ve ever tweeted. Oh man, there are a lot of things, I think. Probably the biggest thing right now that is causing a lot of buzz is the black swan movie. I basically said, ‘If one more person tells me to go see Black Swan, I’m going to drop kick them, because I saw the previews, and in the previews all it was, was ballet and girl drama, which I don’t need to see.’ That wasn’t quote for quote what I wrote on twitter, but it was something along those lines.
Strauss : Who was your childhood star? Why?
Lane : I had a couple of them while I was growing up. Eddie George was one because I was a halfback in pop-warner, and I was told that I could still play halfback. As far as my weight, I weight 185 in high school. Brett Favre was one just being from Wisconsin, if you didn’t like Brett Favre, they would pretty much cast you out of that state. And, then, Michael Jordan as he was one of the greatest of all-time.
Strauss : What was your high school football experience like?
Lane : It was probably one of the greatest experiences of my life. Playing pop-warner with the guys and growing up together all the way up through high school. Some of the greatest games of my life came from high school. Some of biggest life-lessons are still from high school football. Overall, it was one of the best experiences of my life.
Strauss : Why did you choose to attend Murray State?
Lane : Basically coming from Iola. I didn’t have too many options to choose between for colleges, and Murray State was the only full-scholarship offer. That was my goal, to get a full-scholarship. When they called me up a week before signing period, and offered me, I didn’t think twice about it. I found Murray State because of the full-scholarship.
Strauss : What was the transition like?
Lane : Probably the biggest transition was living in the South a little more. I guess some people might not consider Murray State the south, but being from Wisconsin, I did. I had to get used to their accents. I always got made fun of because of the way I pronounce my O’s. As far as the weather, it was a little hotter. It was obviously a little hotter in Murray then it was in Wisconsin. At the same time, the people there were great. I think they’re a little more friendly in the South then they are in the North. Overall, my transition wasn’t too bad.
Strauss : What was the most important thing you learned at Murray State that has helped you the most in the NFL?
Lane : Probably just the hard work aspect of it. I learned it in high school too, but I think that my coaches there and coming from a smaller college, I had to work harder than everybody else just to get where I’m at. Even going to the Senior Bowl was a big accomplishment for me, it wasn’t the biggest goal though. I think just the hard work and the mentality to have a chip on your shoulder at all times.
Strauss : What is your favorite memory from Murray State?
Lane : I think one of the biggest ones was when Murray State scored a touchdown, since we’re called the Racers. We had a horse, race around the track, like a real live horse with a jockey on it. I think watching our offense score and watching the horse go around the track. Unfortunately, one time during my senior year, it was rainy and the jockey fell off of it. That was an experience all in itself. I think watching the horse go around the track is something I’ll never forget.
Strauss : In your last game as a senior, you had your first touchdown?
Lane : Yeah, it was actually my last home game.
Strauss : What was that like to finally cause the horse to run around?
Lane : Haha. Yeah, that’s very true. Man, it was amazing because in high school I played wide receiver and tight end too, so I went through the recruiting process I was thinking I was going to play wide receiver or tight end, but I ended up playing defensive end. Anyways, being able to score a touchdown again and relive my high school memories, it was amazing! I didn’t really know what to do in the endzone, I just kind of stood there in shock of the whole thing. I am never going to forget it.
Strauss : What was it like to be invited to the Senior Bowl?
Lane : It was crazy because it was on such short notice. I planned on playing in the Texas vs. the Nation Bowl, and I want to say it was two days before the senior bowl, it actually started. I got a phone call from my agent saying, “Hey, we ended up getting you in the Senior Bowl, pack your bags and leave right now.” It was kind of on such short notice I didn’t expect to play in the Senior Bowl. It was a very humbling experience. I was thankful that they selected me. I met a lot of cool people there, and some friends I still have until this day. Overall, it was an awesome time.
Strauss : Everybody knows about your fumble recovery for a touchdown at the Senior Bowl, want to take me through what happened?
Lane : I forgot what quarter it was, I think it was the second quarter. Quarterback was in shotgun and the quarterback had snapped it a little over the quarterback’s head. I was playing right defensive end at the time. I saw the ball on the ground, and I ended up getting to it. I fell on top of it. I didn’t hear a whistle when I fell on top of it. I just kind of got up and walked into the end zone I guess you could say, because we were playing NFL rules where yo have to be touched on the ground with the ball in order to be down. Since nobody touched me, I was able to get a touchdown out of it. Just like my Murray State experience, when I got in the end-zone I was in shock, and didn’t have a celebration. I think I ended up throwing the ball. Something like that. I wish I would have kept it looking back on the whole thing. But, I was in shock, and it was cool because all my friends got to see it, and I got a lot of phone calls after. I think what he said about me saying I couldn’t see well. I think that made up for it.
Strauss : More into the NFL, what was your draft day experience like?
Lane : Oh man! It was excellent. It could have been a lot worse than it really was just because people had me going from 2nd to 7th, I had no idea where I was going to go. The draft was three days, so I had two days where I just kind of sat there thinking about where I was going to live for the next year of my life. I had about twelve of my closest friends there and then, it wasn’t really a big event, more low-key. It was just a great experience with my family and friends. It made the whole process easier. The main thing is that it was fun. I wasn’t really watching the TV, I was joking with my friends the whole time. It was a cool experience.
Strauss : What was your first day of the rookie camp like?
Lane : I think it was crazy. Especially our defensive line coach, Joe Cullen who was great. He is a real high intensity type. So… I wasn’t expecting that at all. On top of that, the heat didn’t help anything either. I guess you could say I was not really expecting how intense it was going to be, but I quickly picked up on it and got used to it.
Strauss : Do you have a favorite memory with the Jaguars from this past season?
Lane : I have too many memories from this past season. Probably my favorite memory is playing in our stadium in front of all our fans. It’s cool because before a game starts, they all start chanting, “We are… Jaguars!” Having people to chant and cheer you on, it’s something that at Murray State or Iola, we didn’t have that many fans. Probably like 9,000 tops at Murray State, and playing in front of a big crowd like that, it’s one of the coolest feelings in the world.
Strauss : What’s it like to be a small-town boy, if you want to say the term, to now playing in the NFL and you’re representing your hometown (Iola) in the NFL, you are representing Murray STate in the NFL, what’s that all like?
Lane : Part of the biggest thing that goes into me answering that question is just it makes me think of the people that got me to where I’m at. Even though I came from a small town, there are a lot of people that had influence on me to get me where I’m at right now. Whether that’s high school coaches, or even my pop-warner middle school coaches, my basketball coaches, and obviously my college coaches too. And, my family and friends. When you come from a small town like that and it’s hard to get known, you need people like that who are in your corner who are going to help you and get your name out there and try to mold into a great human being. That’s what my small town did to me. That’s what Murray State also did. For me to be in the NFL right now, and represent those two towns, it’s amazing! It’s great!
Strauss : What’s your nickname? What’s the whole story behind it?
Lane : My nickname is A-Train. I got it in pop-warner. I want to say my fourth grade year. The reason I got it was that my coach said that when I was playing halfback, I ran through guys like a train. And, then the name kind of stuck: A-Train. It was funny because right when I got that nickname, there was a running back out Michigan by name of Anthony Thomas who played for the **** **** who was also called A-Train. I obviously grew up watching him too. He was one of my favorite players. I guess the name A-Train kind of stuck, and it kind of rhymes too, that always helps with the nickname I guess.
Strauss : I guess so. Do you you have a foundation or a charity?
Lane : No, that’s something that I think probably that this next up and coming offseason, I’m going to be working on. I still haven’t found a good cause yet. There are so many out there. But, I put this first year in trying to focus on trying to adjust to the NFL, and trying to get my feet underneath me. But, no there’s something coming. I am going to try to work with some foundation. I may do this on own because it’s always important to give back.
Strauss : Who’s had the most impact on you playing football?
Lane : I really can’t single it down to just one guy. Everyone on defensive line has impacted me one way or another. The thing about our team is that we have no egos, no one is concerned about stats until they get better. Whether it’s Aaron Kampan, Jeremy Mincey, Terrance Knighton, those guys on the defensive line, they have kind of taken me underneath their wing and showed me the ropes which I’m very thankful for. They didn’t have to do that. They see this new kid coming in, they don’t have to help me. But, they take time out of their schedules to help me go over some plays and things like that which helps me out.
Strauss : I know you have a sense of humor, we discussed that in the beginning, but here’s a question that could help your sense of humor shine. If you could describe yourself as any ice cream flavor, what would you be and why?
Lane : Hahaha. Oh man. I am going to go with Blue Moon. Simply because you see Blue Moon and you think, okay this is going to taste like raspberry or something like that. But you actually try it out, and it tastes nothing like you expected. I’m going to say that because people probably have a preconception of me and who I am as a person. They look at me and they think, “Oh, he’s got a beard. He’s got long hair. He’s always yelling at people. So he’s must be kind of crazy.” But, once you get to know me, there preconceived thoughts of me aren’t even close to who I really am a person. Not only is it my sense of humor side, it is my overall integrity too. Haha, I don’t know.
Strauss : Do you have a favorite quote?
Lane : “A million people are going to love you, a million people are going to hate you, but as long as you pull it together yourself everyday with a smile on your face, you are more than loved. Stay true to yourself, and the rest will take care of itself.” Basically it means that you have to stay true to who you are. You can’t always worry about what other people are going to think about you. You have to be you first and then worry about other people. I think as long as you life stylin’, that’s all you can ask for. My stepdad taught it to me before I went to college. It was a lesson I learned before I went.
Strauss : What’s the best advice you have ever received?
Lane : Two really stick out in my mind… First one is to stay humble. That’s just from my family growing up. Something they always preached was to stay humble. The second best piece of advice is that you have to be mentally tough, because you’re not mentally tough, your whole body will shut down. That is not just a good teaching experience with football, it’s in life. It’s your life’s not right, then you’re body’s not going to be.
Strauss : Alright, so it’s time for the first question that has never been asked before, and I think you’d give the perfect answer for it.
Lane : Hit me with it.
Strauss : If you could travel anywhere with anyone, who would you take? Where would you go?
Lane : I would probably travel with my family. My mom, my stepdad, and we’d be going to Lake Tahoe. Just because my stepdad is such a huge skier, I myself, snowboard, and my mom really doesn’t do that. But, if we go to Lake Tahoe, she can always go shopping, and not be in Iola. I think that would be a great family destination, Lake Tahoe.
Strauss : For someone aspiring to play football in the NFL, do you have any advice for them?
Lane : Make sure you set your priorities up first. Stay humble. Make sure you have a strong mind and prepared, because that’s kind of the things that I was preaching before.
Strauss : Is there anything you want to tell Jaguars fans that we have not talked about?
Lane : I just want to say thanks for a great season. It’s kind of funny, at the start of the season, we were kind of getting on a bad rap because they were saying the games would not be shown locally because of the “blackouts”. That was never the case. I think we have some of the greatest fans in the NFL, and looking forward to seeing what we can do next season.
Strauss : Thank you so much for your time Austen, I greatly appreciate it, and so will the listeners and the readers of my site.
Lane : No problem, I appreciate it. Thank you for having me.
Announcement : Thank you for listening to the interview with Austen Lane! I hope you enjoyed it. I hope you leave your comments below as well! Please check out my website http://prointerviews.org/ for other interviews, “LIKE” the Facebook page at http://facebook.com/ProInterviews/, and follow me on twitter at http://twitter.com/ProInterviews/. Please subscribe and add me on YouTube at http://youtube.com/ProInterviews/ Thanks again for listening! Stay tuned for more, and feel free to contact me!
->Here are the personal answers.<-
Strauss : If you could meet anyone, who would it be and why?
Lane : I’d probably say Muhammad Ali because I talk about becoming a world-champion athlete. He was a true sportsman. He did all the talking and everything like that, but I think it’d be cool to have a conversation with him. I would like to re-live his fights.
Strauss : If you weren’t playing in the NFL, what would you want to do?
Lane : Two Things… Either be a country music star, because I could try to be a rapper or a musician, but I think being me is the way to look at it. People would recognize me. Or, an actor.
Strauss : Did you have a favorite NFL team growing up?
Lane : It was the Packers and the Titans. Just because of the whole Eddie George thing. Also, Steve McNair, I’m a big fan of him. Frank Wycheck. But, of course since I’m from Wisconsin, I’m a packers fan too.
Strauss : Do you have a favorite TV show?
Lane : Eastbound and Down on HBO.
Strauss : What is your favorite movie of all time?
Lane : Reservoir Dogs. It’s a Quentin Tarantino movie.
Strauss : What is your favorite type of pie?
Lane : I am going to go with Apple.
Strauss : What’s your favorite song to listen to before a game?
Lane : Usually it’s AC-DC, Thunderstruck. We listened to it in high school, because we were the thunderbirds, so we always listened to it before the game. That one kind of stuck out.