Mohamoud Diabate Feeling Comfortable With The Utes
SALT LAKE CITY- One of the more intriguing new prospects for the Utes is Florida linebacker transfer Mohamoud Diabate. With both of Utah’s linebackers from the 2021 season in Devin Lloyd and Nephi Sewell moving on to the NFL, Diabate has a prime opportunity to use his experience as a Gator to fill a big role for the Utes on defense.
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As Florida’s second-leading tackler in 2021, Diabate has already impressed defensive coordinator Morgan Scalley with his pure athleticism and knowledge of the game. While just a few days into fall camp, Diabate appears to already be pretty comfortable with Utah’s defense, but excited to keep learning and growing within it as well.
RSNB For Me
It’s not always easy moving to a new school and team, but Diabate feels like he really plays in well with Utah’s defensive identity, “RSNB”. Naturally, there are still some learning curves and adjustments that need to be made before the season gets on their way, but Diabate seems to have found a good place that he feels will utilize some of the things he does best on the field.
“Just like coach Scalley says, ‘RSNB’,” Diabate said. “Relentless, smart, nasty, ball hawks. I feel like the relentless, you know, my speed and my athleticism. I’m always pushing to the ball and nasty, I feel like once I get there it’s going to get nasty. I feel like I’m still trying to bond to the coach and make sure I can do everything the program askes me to do.”
Utah has a pretty good history with linebackers both on an individual level and as a group. One of the markers that has set that position group apart over the years for the Utes has been how tight-knit they are, providing many fun duos and trios that seem to work as one. Diabate says that connection is coming along despite several new faces in the room.
“I feel like it’s been coming along great just because we’ve been guys since January,” Diabate said. “Even though we just started practicing we have been chilling with each other, talking ball, and picking each other’s brains so I feel that chemistry and trust is coming a long way. We’ve already been familiar with each other. We’ve been- the same way I’ve been excited, they have been excited for us to get together. Now that we are together we are just rolling and trying to get better every single day.”
As a recruit and freshman, Diabate had a lot of expectations put on him early. In many ways fellow linebacker Lander Barton is in the same boat as a freshman. Diabate says he recognizes the path Barton is on and offers as much advise and help as he can to make the transition smooth.
“I tell Lander- I feel like he’s in a great position just because he doesn’t have to be in a rush,” Diabate said. “I’m here, we can learn and pick each other’s brain. I was in a similar situation when I came into Florida my freshman year. I was ready to play and had an older guy to kind of lean on and learn from. Now he’s with the Houston Texans so we still talk every other day- every couple of days. Those relationships and having them in the room- I feel like it’s very important. It helped me come a long way and I think it will be the same way for Lander.”
A Look At The Offense From The Defense’s Perspective
Diabate hasn’t just been bonding with his brother’s on the defense. Quarterback Cam Rising and him have been developing a nice little rapport on the field during practice as well. Both athletes have reportedly had a nice little back-and-forth going, each challenging and pushing the other. Diabate says he’s impressed with Rising and impressed by the offense as a whole.
“It’s been going great, Cam is a great quarterback and coach Ludwig has scheme,” Diabate said. “Everybody on offense plays hard. It’s been a great challenge and I feel like they are getting me better. Cam is precise, always on the money so playing against him has been a nice little cat-and-mouse game.”
The Marriage Is Over
There is not a single person in Salt Lake City that isn’t looking forward to Utah’s September 3rd season opener in Gainesville. However, no one is probably looking forward to it more than Diabate who described returning to his old stomping grounds as being in his “ex-wife’s house”.
“There is nothing that can compare,” Diabate said. “I don’t know what to compare it to. I’ve been thinking about it a long time. Nothing compares to it. It’ll be a great environment, a great opportunity, and it’s like going to my ex-wife’s house. We’ll see. It’s going to be fun. I still have a lot of love and respect for those guys and university, but right now we are focused on what we have got to do and when that time comes we will be ready.”
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