Alexander Little is a defensive end who played at Orange Coast College (Junior College in Costa Mesa, California) at the end of his college football career. He has recently been drafted into the “Rivals Professional Football League” with aspirations of cracking an NFL or CFL roster for the 2017 season. I had the opportunity to interview Mr. Little about his football career and NFL/CFL dreams.
You went to high school in West Lawn, Pennsylvania (Wilson High School). How did you decide to go Orange Coast in California? And what all went into that decision?
I had a bit of a journey before ending up at OCC. Out of high school, I went to Hudson Valley Community College. After that I went to Georgia Prep Sports Academy, had a great season there, really wanted to go D1 from there but didn’t have enough credits, went to California from there – Mt. San Jacinto, then finally ended up at OCC. So it was quite the journey, but I was glad to end up at OCC.
What was that experience like as a whole? Would you say you enjoyed all of it or were you more focused on simply improving your game?
Pretty much every aspect of my game and life, I did want to improve my game, and improve my grades in the classroom, for sure I prioritized getting more exposure to D1 scouts because out of high school I was a nobody, I wasn’t rated, and I wasn’t getting offers. I feel that every aspect of my game and schooling were improved during my time there.
As with any defensive lineman, the question comes as to what system they fit the best in. Do you see yourself more as a 3-4 DE, 4-3 DT, or something else, or does it not really matter to you?
It really doesn’t matter to me, whatever coaches want me to play I feel like I can play. I’m a pretty quick learner, whatever they want me to play, I’m ready to go. I am open to taking coaching, so if they can coach me in, I’d be good to go anywhere. Even a 3-4 OLB would be fine with me.
You were drafted in the Rivals Professional Football League. Not many people have heard much about it at all, can you describe the basics of it for a reader wanting a general understanding?
The Rivals Professional Football League is best described simply as a developmental league for the NFL and CFL, a lot of players right out of college, and free agents of the NFL and CFL. The purpose of the league is to develop you into an NFL or CFL level player and get you a shot at making a roster.
Which team are you a part of, and how has your experience thus far gone?
I was just drafted to the Michigan Bearcats, I can’t really speak of any experience thus far because I haven’t actually signed yet, so I don’t really have any experiences to speak of.
How did you hear of the league, and can you take us through the process of actually joining it?
I actually got into it by seeing a couple of posts a Facebook, I ended up trying out in Philadelphia, and they loved me. I ended up being a top 3 pick out of the combine and got an invite to the RPFL draft.
On the league’s website, it clearly states that its goal is to prepare players for chances at the CFL or NFL, how competitive do you think the games or league as a whole is?
Oh they are definitely competitive, I’ve watched a lot of film of games, followed the league as a whole, and I can tell you that they have a whole lot of talent. If I do end up playing there, I look forward to playing with the great players the league has.
You were invited to play in the Globe Bowl (Scouting Bowl) in Lehigh Valley, Pennsylvania, on April 1st. Were you surprised at all, and what are you hoping to get out of that experience?
I wasn’t very surprised, but really excited, I got the invite from the founder of the Globe Bowl (Michael Courty) which was pretty awesome. Out of the experience, I really want to get more and more exposure. I want to show coaches in the CFL and NFL that I can play at that level, I’m gonna be going hard every down, taking it day by day, and just try to prove that I can contribute to a team.
What tough experience in your football career have you gone through that has been a major factor in forming the player you are today, perhaps a big injury or being cut from a specific team?
When I was at OCC, there was a point where I thought I might not play football ever again, I had problems with my right shoulder dating back to my time at Georgia Prep Sports Academy that were now getting worse. Thankfully I ended up overcoming it, and my career could continue. Thank Jesus for giving me the strength to overcome it, and that it is now back to 100%.
Every football player is at a different spot in their careers, what are you hoping to make of your football career from here?
As of now, I would love to make a roster for CFL or NFL for this upcoming season, and then come in and do everything I can to become a starting guy. That is what I am working towards right now.
Based on the look of your social media pages, your faith is very important to you, how does faith blend with your career for you?
It’s huge, it’s really important to me, anytime I am going through some kind of adversity, or even something difficult in life in general, Jesus pushes me and helps me get through it. He is my cornerstone; he is everything to me.
As a player, where is your greatest strength?
My strength comes in my motor, I never give up on a play, and I go 100% on each and every down. My effort and motor are things I take pride in.
Where have you seen yourself grow as a player since high school the most, have you always had a high motor?
I have always had the motor, my overall skill set as a defensive lineman has definitely been the part of my game that has grown the most. All the little things that go into technique and pass rush skills are places that I have seen immense growth, I’m really excited about that and think I can continue to grow there.
What do you want readers to know about Alexander Little if they can take one thing from this interview/anything else you want to say?
I am an ambassador of Jesus Christ; he is everything to me. I come from a strong bloodline, my father Stephen Little was the middleweight champion of the world in 1994. Everywhere I go, and in anything I do, I am gonna be great because I serve a great God. Lastly, just stay tuned, there are many great things to come.