November 26, 2020

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Diamond in the Rough: Xavier Kately

With one collegiate offer from Texas Southern University in his possession, Xavier Kately is a senior of the 2021 class at St. Martinville High School in St. Martinville, Louisiana. Measuring in at 6’1″ and 187 lbs, Kately has been playing defensive back for his varsity team since tenth grade. He is a smart and coachable person on the field and in the classroom. Xavier constantly works to improve his athletic ability and tackling techniques. His hard work stands out during the game. As a defensive back, Xavier Kately is an unstoppable force to be reckoned with when it comes to tackling his opponents.

Do you have any outstanding stats from your junior season?

Seven interceptions.

Okay, what is your academic GPA?

3.0

How long have you been playing football?

I started playing tackle in third grade. I know I didn’t play my seventh and eight grade year because I transferred to a school where they didn’t have a football program, but I still worked out and practiced. I started playing football again, my freshman year of high school, and have not stop playing since.

What do you love the most about football?

I like the game as a whole – the tackling, being out there with my brothers and all of that. I really like the game of football. Even if I was on the offensive side, I would still love football. You know what I’m saying?

Yeah, I totally get that – being so passionate about something that constantly drives you to improve yourself and to be a better person. Do you play any other sports or are you a one-sport athlete?

I play basketball as well.

How would you describe your playing style on the field?

I play hard ball. I don’t hesitate when it comes to tackling the opponents.

Right. You’re not afraid to tackle somebody if it gets the job done and contributes to the team’s victory.

Right, and I’ll admit it: my tackling style was different in the past, but I learned the techniques and how to improve your tackling techniques. When I tackle somebody now, I go after them with full force and grab them hard. Do you understand what I’m saying?

Yes, I understand. Often, you get involved with the play, but you have to remember to use those tackling techniques and not let the adrenaline overpower your technical skills. There has to be a balance between having excitement and maintaining technique. I got you because I am the same way when it comes to dancing. Speaking of learning a lot while actively practicing and playing, what have you learned about yourself as a person and as a player through football?

You cannot be dwelling on past plays, you have to keep going. You have to study lots of film as well – it can really help you. Especially when a game is coming up; film can really help you prepare. When you’re athletic and smart on the field, you can be unstoppable.

Right. So, going into your senior season, do you have any goals? They can be individual goals, team goals, or both.

I got a lot of individual and team goals. I want to get a lot of tackles and of course, I want top the number of interceptions I had last season. As a team, my goal is for us to win game-by-game and to go all the way and win a ring. Also, no injuries as well.

Of course, having no injuries is equally important. What have you been doing during the Coronavirus pandemic to improve your athletic ability?

I worked and practiced with one of my coaches on the field a lot. Yeah, you can left – you can get stronger, but the field is where you can really excel at football. I’ve been working on a lot of technique on the field because being smart makes you a good player too.

You’ve been improving yourself in as many aspects of football as you can in preparation of your senior season and potentially playing on a collegiate level.

Yep, because that’s the only thing that matter.

Okay, so digressing from football, for a second – to get to know you better. Do you have any hobbies?

As of right now, with this coronavirus, I’m not crazy on going out anywhere. Outside of football, and when I’m not playing basketball, I usually enjoy playing video games. To be honest, besides online schooling, practicing, and video games, I haven’t done a lot of things because of this pandemic. I didn’t get a job during that time because I was working out and practicing a lot.

Right and currently, football is your job because you want to graduate high school and play at a collegiate level.

Yeah. I’m trying to get right – you know what I’m saying?

Yeah, I understand what you mean. Personally, where do you see yourself playing post-high school?

Currently, Texas Southern University. I really like that school. I wouldn’t mind playing over there.

That’s the university you got an offer from – got it.

Yeah and I really wouldn’t mind going over there. They have a good coaching staff with the vision of rebuilding the program. Academically, it’s a good school. My goal, this season, is to athletically perform at a level where a lot more colleges want me to play for their school. To be honest, at the moment, I’m not one hundred percent sure where I want to officially commit. All I know is I don’t want to end this season with the same performance level as my junior year.

Right, and that’s completely okay to not be one hundred percent sure right now on where you want to play collegiate ball at. You still have one more high school season to actively play with lots of momentum. You want to keep your options open when it comes to active recruitment and obtaining your higher education. I absolutely understand where you’re coming from. Tell me more about your game day routine – how do you get hyped and focused in?

I go to school and I always my music playing in my ear. I watch what I eat. I tend to eat more energizing food and drink a lot of water – got to stay hydrated. I watch film for sure – all the way up ’til it’s time to go out on the field and compete.

You know – this is your senior year, you’re graduating next spring, and I have a great feeling the readers and I will get to watch you play college-ball. What advice do you have for the younger players who aspired to play on collegiate level?

Put in a lot of hard work and stay on top of your academics. You cannot play college ball if your academics is lacking. Be coachable and learn the recruitment game as well.

That’s some good advice. I like the accountability and responsibility. How would you describe yourself, as a player, in three words?

Smart, athletic, and coachable. I know I’m coachable because coach expects me to get the job done – no complaining and no nonsense.