Outspoken MSU DE Shilique Calhoun Speaks Out on MSU Spring Football And A Lot More!
Q: How do you feel like you’ve improved from day one until today this spring?
A: I love the opportunity to be out there with the rest of the guys playing hard, working hard, trying to get better every day. It’s a thrill definitely, being out there with the 1’s and just trying to get better every day. I would say it’s never a promise though, because there’s always guys behind you. I’ve got guys that I know for a fact that are behind me, trying to come and trying to take my spot. It helps me work harder every day. I keep trying to progress every day. It was rough the first couple days, getting into that starting role. But I’m getting better every day, without a doubt.
Q: Coach said you had a good spring but he still sees a lot opportunities…
A: They kinda want you to be perfect, always. They want you to be gods on the field. They want the best of you, they want you to play the best. Even when you mess up they feel like those are errors you can fix yourself. Even if I was perfect on the field, you would always find a new reason to tell me. Hey, your shoelaces are untied. It’s fun though. I love the competition. Seeing who can yell the loudest between me and Coach Narduzzi.
Q: A little birdie told me you and Riley had a collision.
A: Somewhat . I was more of a second hitter. I was a little dirty once we got on the floor. It was all fair play. Definitely good sportsmanship. Playing with him, seeing him at running back is a thrill. He’s gonna do amazing things, without a doubt.
Q: This offense has struggled this spring. That’s not a secret. But when he gets in there the energy level goes way up on both sides. What do you think it is that he brings the higher energy level to the offense?
A: He’s a Bullough. There’s not much you have to say after that. Knowing that you have a Bullough backing you, you feel like you’re set. Like I said, Coach wants us to play like gods and the Bulloughs are like gods pretty much on the field. So having him out there, knowing there’s a lot of security, knowing that he’s gonna come down here strong. Especially because of their family origin that’s been here, hard, tough players. Definitely having him back there, they know he’s gonna be running strong without a doubt.
Q: If you were a senior making the pick for you team tomorrow at the draft, who would you pick, running back first?
A: Myself. Myself, of course. Put me in the back field. I wanna make plays. No, I’d have to go with that R&B, Riley Bullough. I mean, his initials, RB. It’s basically spelling it out for us. I would definitely go with him. I’m gonna say I do cheat for him because he is a linebacker. He’s part of my defensive corp. So yeah, I would say Riley Bullough without a doubt.
Q: Where are you going in the draft?
A: I don’t know. I hope #1. I hope I get a little praise and they’re like, You know, I’m picking you #1. We’ll see though. I hear a lot of talk but nothing set in stone.
Q: Are you gonna be disappointed if you go late?
A: Not at all. I’m gonna be the sleeper. If I can’t be #1 then I’ll be the sleeper. I’ll come out here, I’ll make little silent plays here and there.
Q: If the media was voting you would make the all-talker team.
A: Without a doubt. I can see that. I’ll praise that. I’ll praise that I’m able to talk. I’m a good quality speaker.
Q: Who’s the quietest guy?
A: Dave Fennell, D tackle from Oregon. Quietest man you’ll ever see. And if you tell him to do something, Mmmhmm. And that’s it. That’s as much as you’re gonna get out of him. Mmmmhmm.
Q: How’s he doing? Have you seen him get better over the spring?
A: He has been working a lot harder. There’s so many aspects of his game that could get better, just like everyone else’s. He’s a freshman coming in trying to make plays, trying to get on the field. But he’s definitely improved from when he first got here. His footwork still needs work, just like everyone else. But he’s an improving player. He’s on the rise without a doubt.
Q: When I talked with Joel and mentioned your name his face lit up like, about the support. What do you guys bring to each other?
A: We try to keep each other steady. Because we can get hard heads out there. Once you go on the field it’s like, No I don’t care what they said. I was right. So he keeps my head steady and I try to do the same for him. Even on the field we keep our faith in God so he does that a good deed for me, making sure that I stay focused on playing football and believing in my faith and trying to stay focused. I’m trying to do it for him but he’s holding me down pretty much right now.
Q: How’s Lyles taking the transition?
A: Lyles, he’s improving a lot. At first, when he first got to defensive end, he wasn’t more of a hands guy. Because as a linebacker comes down you wanna shoulder everything. But he’s gotten a lot better. He’s using his hands a lot more. He’s improving every day. I saw something he did today, a pass rush he did today, and I was pretty impressed. I had to stop him, Come here come here. Good job, man. That was good. I haven’t used it so I was kind of like, Whoa. Alright. Teach me something, ya know?
Q: He said his biggest difference with the transitioning problem was fielding boundary. So he was still thinking in his head…
A: Yeah, he was thinking he was a linebacker so he would hear field blitz and he would… I’m the backer, so he would think he’s going. Lyles, what were you doing there man? Man, I don’t know. That’d be his only words. But he’s gotten better. He understands it a little more now. I’m definitely thankful of that. It’s nice knowing he’s backing you also, it’s nice knowing that.
Q: What is Donavon bringing to the offensive line?
A: That man’s a holder. He’s a holder. He’s a cheat. No, I’m joking. Donavon’s a great player. He’s a strong dude. You could see when he came in he was a big guy. Even from his high school film. I watched it. I gotta check out the competition. We play him every day. But I watched his high school film and he was a big guy. He runs his feet and he does well on pass protection. He does very well on pass protection. It’s a competition every day, every time I go against him. I’m pretty sure they’re very happy to have him on that side of the ball.
Q: Who’s the most difficult offensive lineman that blocks you and why?
A: Jack Conklin. He’s a great pass setter. I’m at a loss for words. The way he pass sets is hard to beat. It is very hard to beat. Actually, we have a bet going on now. If I beat him in practice… We have a hat that we pass back and forth. If I win, I get the hat for the day. If he wins, he gets the hat. But he is a tough guy.
Q: Wasn’t that what you said…the meanest guy out there? Was it Conklin?
A: No. Conklin’s not that mean. He’s a good guy, he’s a good guy. The meanest person out there is probably Jack Allen. That’s the meanest guy out there. He’s not even on the field and I still feel the anger. There’s no one surpassing him.
Q: What makes him…
A: I don’t know. I think because he was a wrestler at first, he had that angry mentality where they just wanna hurt you. I mean, he doesn’t come on the field trying to hurt me, but he definitely lets me know when he can. Hey, I had you right there. I could have hurt you right there.
Q: Does he have anger management issues?
A: No, no. Jack doesn’t have anger management issues. From the outside looking in you might think so, though. You might think so. You might think I’m crazy from the outside looking in. I’m not gonna lie. If you go on the field and you heard what I said to these guys, you’d think we were crazy.
Q: Who’s the best holder? The best job at being sneaky at holding and keeping you from doing what you’re doing. I mean blatant, where they’d get flag after flag.
A: Aw, there’s no one to get flags on me though. I don’t ever get a holding call. I feel like I’m cheated every day.
Q: They hold you every play?
A: Yes. They hold me every play. I could make a play every play. They hold me. I don’t know what’s going on but hopefully the refs start to see it. It’s getting frustrating. No, I would say… The person that has the best way of hiding their holding is probably Connor Kruse. He’s good. He’s a big guy too. So he can get into you. He’ll get into you. You’re trying to spin away and he’s holding on tight. You think you’re getting away but no, he’s good at it. He’s good. If you wanna perfect your craft, call Connor Kruse, I’ll tell you that.
Q: Did he whip you today in practice?
A: Oh no. Oh no. He never whips me.
Q: Where’s the hat?
A: I have it in the locker.
Q: How many days have you had this hat thing and who’s won it more?
A: I would say I’ve won it more, of course. The last time he had it was when he bought it. Yeah, that was it. That was about the last time he had it was when he bought it. But I still have it. Actually, he’s supposed to give it back to me. I was being generous. I’d give it back to him, being a nice guy. Nice guy that I am, I wanted to give it back to him. He’s failing to return it though. But I’ll definitely get it back today.
Q: What kind of hat is it?
A: It’s a Michigan State hat. Yes, Spartan dogs all the way.
Q: You loved last year’s Youth Clinic. Last year you were letting the kids tackle you, and then at one point you were doing cartwheels.
A: Back flips, yeah cartwheels, back flips.
Q: My point to you is what is it you love about the Youth Clinic?
A: It’s good to just see those kids having so much fun. When I was a kid I had a lot of fun with my brothers. Whether it was by myself or with my brothers, I had a lot of fun. Just to see the smiles on their faces. I go home to my niece every chance I get, and to see her smile is like nothing else. To be able to let them have a smile for a day or a minute, it brings joy to me too also.
Q: Will you break out the back flips on Saturday?
A: I don’t know. I gotta conserve that energy. I might do one or two.
Q: What would it take to get a back flip?
A: A smile. All I need is a smile. If they ask me to do a back flip I’ll do it for them without a doubt.
Q: Will you do one on the field if you get a sack?
A: Oh. That’s rough. Those pads are heavy man. Those pads and a helmet…
Q: You get a penalty for that anyway?
A: I might get a penalty. I might get a penalty. I’m gonna keep that one in the bag. I don’t want Coach D to hurt me.
Q: What is the value of Saturday that’s different from the other scrimmages or practices?
A: This one’s a little different because the defense is more divided. Right now our defenses are divided, we’re divided into two. This is more of… Coaches are evaluating today. The other scrimmages were more practice, to see how you react in the Stadium. Now it’s like it’s game day. It’s time to turn it up and give it your all. That’s the biggest thing; it’s more of a game this Saturday than it was the other scrimmages.