NFL Draft Q&A: Southern Miss center Cameron Tom
Our daily NFL Draft Q&A series continues with Southern Miss center Cameron Tom, who isn't at the NFL combine this week but helped himself at the East-West Shrine Game in January and is getting prepared for his pro day on April 4 in Hattiesburg. He took a few minutes to talk about his draft prep ...
Q: First off, where are you training to get ready for your pro day?
A: "I'm in Madison, Mississippi. There are a couple of guys from my school here, a slot from Texas A&M, a tight end from Arkansas and an offensive lineman from North Carolina."
Q: What were your priorities for this spring in terms of things to improve on before the draft?
A: "I added on some weight. I wanted to add about 10 pounds. And my strength, working on my bench-press reps. Those were a couple of things I wanted to work on. I'm definitely getting stronger."
Q: What's the easiest way for you to put on 10 pounds in a short amount of time?
A: "Eat and eat a lot, even when you don't want to. You just keep on eating. A lot of protein. Peanut butter and jellies and drinking a lot of protein shakes. I was at 295, 296 this morning. I want to get to 300."
Q: "You had Todd Monken as a head coach at Southern Miss, and he's here in Tampa now as the Bucs' offensive coordinator. What do you remember best about playing for him?"
A: "Just the energy he brings every day. He's one of the fiery guys, and he'd come in drinking Red Bull. He brought a lot of energy every day. I talked to him at the East-West game, me and (QB) Nick (Mullens) did."
Q: When you're watching NFL games, are there centers you like to watch most or pattern yourself after?
A: "I like to watch (Maurkice) Pouncey up in Pittsburgh, as well as (Jason) Kelce with the Eagles. Their schemes are similar and I feel like Pouncey is a good size. We're built the same, so I watch him a little bit."
Q: Who's the toughest player you went up against in college?
A: "I'd say Vernon Butler from LaTech. He went in the first round (to the Panthers)."
Q: And the best teammate you had in college?
A: "Probably Nick (Mullens)."
Q: You grew up in Baton Rouge -- your dad is still a professor at LSU -- what were your favorite teams growing up?
A: "LSU and the Saints, and it was pretty cool that I got to play in both their stadiums."
Q: How close are you to your degree?
A: "I graduate in May in finance. I've thought about financial planning and advising (after football), but who knows. I'm not too sure yet."
Q: We ask all of you guys for food recommendations. If I'm in Hattiesburg or Baton Rouge, where's your favorite place to eat?
A: "Leatha's barbecue (in Hattiesburg). You can get anything there. Pulled pork, barbecue chicken. Their ribs are really good. I've tried all the meats they have there. Their cole slaw is good. In Baton Rouge, I'd say Louisiana Lagniappe. It's a seafood place. It was really good."
Check out our other NFL Draft Q&As: Kansas State defensive end Jordan Willis, Texas A&M tackle Avery Gennesy, Florida State defensive end DeMarcus Walker, Miami tight end David Njoku, Connecticut safety Obi Melifonwu, Arkansas defensive lineman Jeremiah Ledbetter, Miami cornerback Corn Elder, Oklahoma State defensive tackle Vincent Taylor, Stanford safety Dallas Lloyd, West Virginia cornerback Rasul Douglas, Florida tackle David Sharpe, Mississippi State WR/RB Brandon Holloway, Minnesota cornerback Jalen Myrick, Oklahoma State tackle Victor Salako, N.C. State center Joe Scelfo, Army linebacker Andrew King, Louisana Tech receiver Trent Taylor, Tennessee running back Alvin Kamara, USC defensive tackle Stevie Tu'ikolovatu and Saint Francis safety Lorenzo Jerome.