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December 6, 2011

Retired Cardinals RB, Marcel Shipp Interview

by Max Strauss

Marcel Shipp played for the University of Massachusetts and was an All-Atlantic 10 selection three times in his collegiate career. He then entered the 2011 NFL Draft, but went undrafted. He signed a UDFA contract with the Arizona Cardinals. MS was a member of the Arizona Cardinals from 2002 through 2007. More recently, he played in the UFL with the Las Vegas Locos. His best season came in 2003 when he played with Emmitt Smith in 2003. He totaled 830 yards on the ground and another 184 receiving. This interview was done in December of the 2011 NFL season.

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Strauss : How do you connect with your fans?

Shipp : I’m very down to earth, so if I see a fan or anything, I always make myself available to them!

Strauss : What was it like for you playing youth football?

Shipp : I was cut in the 6th grade, but things got a little easier in 7th and 8th grade, but I still didn’t understand the game yet.

Strauss : What was your high school football experience like?

Shipp : It was like night and day. I started working hard that summer before school started, and then suddenly, I was pretty good.

Strauss : What was the transition like to UMass?

Shipp : I attended a prep school for a year after high school, so UMass fell right into place. The game was not that fast being that the prep school helped me adjust with the speed.

Strauss : What was it all like at UMass?

Shipp : The best part of football was just having fun. We won a National Championship while I was there. I want those years back.

Strauss : What was the best part about being recognized in your conference?

Shipp : Just knowing that I put the work in. No one gave me anything! I went out and pushed myself to the limit to take it.

Strauss : Of all the awards you received at Mass, which is your favorite to look back on?

Shipp : Being an All-American during my sophomore year.

Strauss : What is your favorite memory from Massachusetts?

Shipp : Being 2-9 during my freshman year. Then during my sophomore year, winning the National Championship.

Strauss : What was your Pro Day like?

Shipp : It was good. I went to the combine which was the worst weekend of my life, but pro day was more football related.

Strauss : What was your draft day experience like?

Shipp : Very stressful! I watched guys get drafted ahead of me, so I’m siting there like I have to be next, but my name was never called.

Strauss : What was the Cardinals’ organization really like?

Shipp : It was good. It’s an organization that you get what you deserve. You play well, and you’ll get the contract. I love the Bidwells!

Strauss : What was it like to play for the Arizona Cardinals?

Shipp : That’s really the only team that I played for, so I loved the organization because they gave me a chance, and I took advantage of it!

Strauss : What was the best part about playing in Arizona?

Shipp : The weather.

Strauss : Do you have a favorite memory in the NFL?

Shipp : Meeting Emmitt Smith, when we played the cowboys. It was my only time being star-struck lol.

Strauss : What was Emmitt Smith like when he was on your team?

Shipp : I grew up watching him, and couldn’t believe he was on our team. He matured me a lot as a person and player.

Strauss : What was it like to get another chance and play for the Houston Texans?

Shipp : I wasn’t there long, but the organization seemed amazing during my first day there. Walking through the hallway, everyone who was there working was like, “Hi Mr. Shipp”. It was such a great feeling!

Strauss : What was the UFL like?

Shipp : Back to having fun playing football. It was a great league, and playing for Coach Fassel was amazing!

Strauss : What was your favorite memory with the Locos?

Shipp : Winning back-to-back championships!

Strauss : How do you describe your style of play? Who do you compare your game to?

Shipp : I’m a hard nose guy. I feel like I’m a well-rounded back that can do anything and everything on the field. I was always compared to Priest Holmes, but I guess that’s because we wore the same number.

Strauss : Who has had the most impact on your career?

Shipp : My strength coach Bob Otrando at UMass. He pushed me every time I stepped into that gym, so I really credit him for my success. I didn’t want to ever let him down!

Strauss : If you could describe yourself as any ice cream flavor, what would you be and why?

Shipp : Cookies N’ Cream because when you deal with Marcel Shipp you’re going to get the best of both worlds!

Strauss : For someone aspiring to play football in the NFL, do you have any advice for them?

Shipp : Hard work pays off, and all you can do is control your part.

Strauss : Is there anything you want to tell your fans that I have not asked?

Shipp : I never let football stress me. I handled my part, and I played the game. That’s our job as players, so shut your mouth and play.

Strauss : Thank you so much for your time!

Shipp : Thank you… No problem for answering these questions.

->Here are the personal questions that Marcel Shipp answered.<-

Strauss : Who was your childhood star?

Shipp : Bo Jackson. I think he might have been the best NFL RB ever.

Strauss : What is your favorite TV Show?

Shipp : Fresh Prince. Will Smith and Carlton are a such a funny team.

Strauss : What is your favorite movie of all time?

Shipp : Step Brothers. Once again, they made such a funny team.

Strauss : What is your favorite type of pie?

Shipp : Apple pie.

Strauss : What would be your last meal on earth?

Shipp : My mom’s baked ziti and fried chicken.

Strauss : Did you have a special pre-game ritual?

Shipp : My playlist had to be updated in a certain order ever week, and it depended on how my week’s prep went.

Strauss : What is your favorite song?

Shipp : I’m a Jay-Z fan, so anything affiliated with him.


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