Get to know Andre Monroe & who he is off the field, interviewed by Monté Gaddis
Monte Gaddis: Who is Andre Monroe?
Andre Monroe: I am a God fearing man. I am a football player. I am a student of life. A brother. A son. A great friend and a person of great passion in whatever he does. I cannot completely answer who I am because I am still finding out everyday. One thing that is certain is that I put 100% into everything I love and always have visions and love and laugh every chance that I get.
Monte Gaddis: What does football mean to you?
Andre Monroe: Football began as my everything and was the only thing. I took an injury that almost took the game away from me is when I realized that football is a major part of my life but there is room for other aspects of my life to shine. Football is a way of therapy for me as a way to take all of the negativity I experience and let it go on the field. Football is also an opportunity to meet people of all different walks in life with different views and traditions for me to experience and exchange. Football also taught me to have goals, reach them and to work with others towards a common goal!
Monte Gaddis: Tell me about growing up in your city, Maryland?
Andre Monroe: I grew up in Prince George’s County, Maryland. Depending on which part of the county you live in, the circumstances are different. Where I grew up is a predominately black area. I often found myself going to school outside of my neighborhood ultimately going to high school in Washington D.C. Like many other cities there are ways to get into negative or positive things.
The negativity has always been around in my life but my faith and strong family support kept me from going that route and staying on track to better myself. I was also no stranger to public transportation and got very familiar with it when my grandmother used to tech my brothers and me how to use the system. In short where I grew up is similar to may places in our country, where there is positivity and negativity, latest fashion trends, children with ambitions and families trying to make it, all while trying to make it in this maze of life.
Monte Gaddis: What did you learn with your time with the Saskatchewan Roughriders? And are you prepared to play in Toronto with the Argonauts ?
Andre Monroe: When I was with the Saskatchewan Roughriders I learned how to be a professional employee. It was not like college where things were mandatory and they held your hand. This was no longer a game at this point. This was my job and they expect you to treat it in such a way. This means doing what you have to do to be able to perform, even if that men sleeping in the facility to be where I needed to be on time ore waking up hours in advance to catch a cab and avoid or plan for unforeseen events to keep me from being on time (A professional). I also learned what people meant when they said, “This is a business”. It seemed like every week people were in and out making me realize that this might be the unstable job that anyone could have, but the love and passion I have for the game made me do what I needed to do to keep my dream alive. I am more prepared than I will ever be to play in Toronto with the Argonauts.
Monte Gaddis: What are you best attributes on the field ?
Andre Monroe: Speed, Instincts, Aggression, Hands, Adaptability, Football I.Q. and playing with a chip on my shoulder with heart are my best attributes on the field.
Monte Gaddis: Other than football, what else do your spend time doing?
Andre Monroe: I spend my time outside of football, doing several things. One of them is just spending time with my family and friends because family and friends are one of my highest values in my life because without them I am nothing. I also spend my time making music and coaching football and spreading knowledge to those that ask for my input. I love video games and I do spend time playing video games to entertain my imagination as well. Other than that I’m just a regular guy that likes to relax and chill with his people!image1(4)
Monte Gaddis: Who are some up incoming athletes the world should keep an eye on?
Andre Monroe: A couple of athletes that the world should keep an eye on are my brother Ayron Monroe at Penn State, Kevin Molstvy at Loch Raven High School and Yannick Ngakoue, just graduated from the University of Maryland and is the current All-Time season sack leader. There are many more but this is to name a few!
Monte Gaddis: Give a few tips to the athletes following in your steps?
Andre Monroe: A couple of things I would tell athletes following in my steps is to keep your faith and have that as your foundation. Do what you love because if you really love something you will always give 100% and you will be happy! Learn from everything, the hardest falls are where you learn the most from. Watch the company you keep because the things you associate with became part of you to those who watch you even though you might not be the person directly doing it. When things get rough you will be stronger for it once you make it through that trial. Only mess with those who support you and have your best interest and follow your heart it will not steer you wrong.
Monte Gaddis: Tell me about your time at the University of Maryland on and off the field?
Andre Monroe: My time on the field at the University of Maryland is where I saw the most development as a player. I learned many techniques but I also learned that I had to use the techniques that complemented my game the most and not just doing them for the sake of it. I made many life long friends with my teammates. I also learned how important communication was to excel as a team. I was a D.A.W.G. on the field. I had and still have no fear of anyone when I stepped on the field. Everyone was on my bad side and I made sure my opponents knew that. I was also a team player doing what the defense asked of me and doing extra to allow others to make plays on the field asked of me. Playing at Maryland was one of the best times of my life and I ended my career graduating and becoming Maryland’s all-time career sack leader!
Monte Gaddis: Final Words and Shoutouts?
Andre Monroe: My only final words I have is “Stay true to who you are, and peace and love”! Shout out to all the underdogs out here and to those that have something they love and do all they can for that!