Nov. 4, 2005
#99 Ronald Talley
Sophomore, 6-4, 261
Oak Park, Mich./Renaissance
Sophomore defensive end Ronald Talley has played in all seven games this season and earned his first career start in Notre Dame’s 49-23 win over Brigham Young on October 22. After not seeing action as a freshman in 2004, Talley has been a significant contributor for the Irish on defense this season. He has recorded six solo tackles and 10 assisted tackles. Talley has one sack, one pass break-up and been credited with 1.5 tackles for loss of eight yards. GameDay’s Elizabeth Goers gives Irish fans a chance to get to know Ronald Talley.
Goers: What is your major and how did you get interested in that area of study?
Talley: My major is Film, Television and Theater. What I want to do is direct movies and music videos, because I like entertainment, music and everything. It’s a big part of what is going on in culture today so I want to be a part of that.
Goers: What is your favorite class and why?
Talley: I didn’t expect criminology to be my favorite class, but it is because it deals with the social systems and I like hands on stuff dealing with people.
Goers: What made you pick Notre Dame over the other schools you were interested in? What were the other schools?
Talley: Some of the other schools that I was interested in were Michigan State, Wisconsin, Iowa, a lot of Big Ten schools and Louisville. I picked Notre Dame because it had the best package in terms of academics and football. Plus, we get a lot of exposure and have the chance to win a national championship, which I think we will.
Goers: To date, what has been the highlight of your Notre Dame career?
Talley: I would have to say my sack in the BYU game this year.
Goers: Who were your sports idols as a kid and why?
Talley: As a kid, it was Deacon Jones. He played defensive end and he came up with the term quarterback sack. I used to watch the tape `100 Toughest NFL Players’ and he always stood out to me.
Goers: As a football player, is there any one player you modeled your game after?
Talley: When I was in high school, I used to play basketball and football and they used to call me `Pep’. That was short for Julius Peppers who played basketball and football for North Carolina. I kind of wanted to model myself after him in 9th and 10th grade.
Goers: Who has been your biggest non-sports role model and why?
Talley: That would be my mother, because she has worked hard and been through a lot of things. She has actually made a movement, a real impact on life by herself.
Goers: What is one thing in your life that you cannot live without?
Talley: I can’t live without my mother.
Goers: Do you have any pre-game rituals?
Talley: I listen to my favorite group, the Detroit group, Street Born Shuttle Boys. I listen to them to keep me motivated, keep my heart pumping and adrenaline rushing.
Goers: How do you think you’ve grown as a person since coming to Notre Dame?
Talley: I think I have grown to realize how tough life is. It’s always been tough, but now as a man I am witnessing it as an individual.
Goers: What is one thing about you that might surprise people?
Talley: People think I am mean, because of my facial structure. When I am serious, when I am not smiling, people think I am mean. Actually, I am not a mean guy.
Goers: If you were stranded on an island and could only eat one meal, only listen to one song, and spend your time with only one person; what would you eat, what would you listen to and who would you pick?
Talley: The one person would be my mother; the meal would be black-eyed peas, cornbread and candy yams and the song I would listen to is by the Shuttle Boys, it is called `Thugproof’– it talks about all the people who stuck with them and loved them unconditionally.
Goers: What is you favorite movie and why?
Talley: My favorite movie is probably `Scarface’. He came from nowhere and made something of himself no matter what he had to do.
Goers: Where is the toughest place that you’ve played as a college football player?
Talley: It definitely would be Michigan. Their fans are crazy and it was really loud playing there.
Goers: What CD do you have in your collection that would surprise people?
Talley: Probably Bobby Valentino.
Goers: What would a movie about your life be titled and who would star as you?
Talley: The title would be `The Rose that Grew from Concrete,’ and the actor would probably be Denzel Washington.”
Goers: If you had the chance to play golf with anyone in history, besides you, who else would be in your foursome and why would you pick those three people?
Talley: Bill Gates, Puff Daddy and Jay-Z, because they have led lives that have impacted people socially and in other ways. I want to see how I can step up and make an impact like them.
Goers: When your football career is over, what do you see yourself doing?
Talley: I want to own a recreational center or sports center, something for my neighborhood to give back. I also want to own different small businesses, definitely real estate and own properties.
Goers: Describe what it feels like on game day and playing Notre Dame stadium?
Talley: It feels good; everyone is screaming your name, and to win and with them cheering for you – I really appreciate the fans’ support.
Goers: What is your favorite thing about playing for Notre Dame?
Talley: I like the way everybody tries to come out and always marks playing us as a big game. We get the best from our opponents. I don’t want to play them when they are down, but play them when they have all their best players and are bringing their best effort.