It’s the dream shared by countless boys and men. Thousands of people screaming their name and millions tuned in to watch them from home. For two of Florida A&M University ‘s football elite, the dream is about to become a reality.
Daniel Parish and Roosevelt Kiser are being seriously considered for the NFL draft.
Standing at 6 foot 7 inches and 340 pounds, Parish, a senior starting offensive linebacker on the FAMU football team, is a large man. ESPN has predicted that his size may be his weakness in the pros, but Parish thinks that his frame made him stand out to recruiters.
“People say that (my) size can’t be coached,” said Parish, a Tallahassee resident.
“I think that it gives me a slight advantage,” Parish said.
Whether his size is his strength or weakness, it hasn’t stopped Parish from achieving great things during his college football career.
Parish was on the Sheridan Broadcasting Network’s college all-American team, the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference All-Star First Offense team, and he played in the end of the season all-star game.
“It’s a great feeling that teams are interested in me,” Parish said.
“I can’t ask for anything else right now.”
Roosevelt Kiser, the wide receiver from Fort Lauderdale that is being recruited, shares Parish’s sentiment.
“I never thought that I would make it this far,” Kiser said.
“This position is a dream come true, and I just hope that I make it to the next level.”
Much like Parish, Kiser gets criticized about his size. The 5-foot-9-inch, 160-pound senior is smaller than the average wide receiver, but he doesn’t let his frame faze him.
“I’ve always been undersized, that’s just something that you learn to deal with,” Kiser said. “I know that I will have to work my way into the wide receiver position, but I don’t think that my size is a disadvantage.”
Kiser went on to stating that his height will not have a drastic effect on his overall performance in the professional league.
“Nowadays, there are a lot of short receivers in the NFL,” Kiser said.
Kiser’s size hasn’t proven to be a disadvantage in his college career. He has proven to be more than just a wide receiver by returning kickoffs, punts and holding field goals.
Kiser is the No. 6 ESPN receiving leader in the MEAC conference and had some impressive statistics in his senior college football season.
In 2006 alone, Kiser scored 6 touchdowns, 63 catches and a total of 647 receiving yards. He was named the “senior kick return ace” on the 2006 MEAC all-star team first team, and he was also named as a wide receiver on the MEAC all star second team.
With such accolades, Kiser isn’t afraid of what’s next for him in the NFL.
“I’m not intimidated. I just want to play so bad,” Kiser said. “The scariest part is that you can be there one day and gone the next.”
Kiser believes that other teammates can make it to his position if they work hard and take advantage of their time. He learned to use his extra time lifting weights, working out and catching balls early on in his career.
“There were guys who came in before me that aren’t in my position,” said Kiser, in a solemn tone. “Don’t wait until the last minute. If you do, it will be too late.”
Parish had similar words of wisdom about hard work for his teammates.
“You get out of football whatever you put into it,” Parish said.
“Play every play like it’s your last. Don’t hold anything back.”Both players are being used as examples for their teammates who are trying to further their football careers.
Mitchell Brian Denison, a sophomore lineman from Merritt Island, sees the bigger picture in Parish and Keiser’s accomplishments.
“We are really proud of (them),” Denison said of the FAMU football team.
“These players are a good representation of FAMU. They will draw more attention toward the talent on the football team,” Denison said.
The Rattlers football team are certain that these athletes outcome will definitely be of high expectations.
However, it is too early to tell the fate of these two players, but no matter where they end up, all of FAMU is sure to be watching.