Last week, it was reported that The Philadelphia Eagles met with OG Ethan Cooper from Indiana University (PA), working him out at his school, giving him a play sheet, and kicking the tires on the young prospect.
With the Eagles giving some much deserved attention to Cooper, we decided to talk with him via phone for a new Small School Sleeper Profile.
Coming from such a small school, Cooper may not get the hype most players get..but please do not be fooled by that. He is worth the look. Blessed with great size, at 6’3, 325 lbs, and amazing athletic ability, he is both a force in the run and the pass game. Because of the way he can use his size to his advantage, he is also capable of making some big plays downfield.
We asked Ethan about the stigma of playing for such a small school?
“When it comes down to it, it’s all football, it really is. I don’t care about the opinions of anyone really, I understand the level of play isn’t considered great, but I stand by it. I feel that the opportunity I had there was for the best.
We play some serious ball here at IUP, we are a physical, ‘punch you in the mouth’ type of program. I also know that because of the level of play, I will need to prove myself to everyone all the time. I don’t waste my time trying to make people happy, I know what I can do, what I am capable of doing. Best of all, like most guys coming from our level, we have great work ethic and we will out work any and everyone.
I am the type of player who is never satisfied, I want to keep working and getting better. So even if I came from the biggest school ever and was considered the number one overall pick..I would work to be better.”
Continuing on, he spoke about his love of the Eagles, his fit, and his favorite player.
“Growing up in Harrisburg, PA I loved the Eagles. It’s funny, because my family are all Cowboys fans. I grew up loving the Birds’ and wanting to suit up for them. Now that I am closer to doing so, for them or any team, it is surreal.
I love Jason Peters as far as active players, but who doesn’t love Brian Dawkins?! Peters is so dominating and so smooth, and just so good at what he does. If I can be half the player he is, I would be blessed. He is just so good, it is crazy.
I think as far as my fit, I can play both guard spots, but honestly, I will do anything the coaches ask me to do. I don’t care as long as I am helping the team..and growing as a player and person.
The Eagles came to me at school, worked me out and I spent time talking with the assistant O-line coach. It wasn’t exactly what people were reporting at the time, but they did visit me.”
Cooper is a prospect with the thick base to move Defensive Tackles off of their spot and the quick feet to stop edge rushers cold. When you look at his size and all around skill set, you see a player who could come in and be a difference maker for the Eagles, line. The Birds’ have a need for future depth, even with the additions last year and this Offseason. Cooper could fill a need while learning the NFL, game, and could one day become a starter..emulating the player he looks up to so much.
Mandatory Photo Credit: AP Photo/David J. Phillip