Meet 2023 NFL Draft Prospect James Basalyga, WR, Waterloo

James Basalyga is a play maker at the wide receiver position for the University of Waterloo in Ontario.
James Basalyga is a play maker at the wide receiver position for the University of Waterloo in Ontario. James recently sat down with Draft Diamonds owner Damond Talbot.

  • Name: James Basalyga
  • Position: WR
  • College: Waterloo, ON
  • Height: 5’11”
  • Weight: 190 lbs.
  • Instagram: jbas99

What makes you a top prospect at your position  in the 2023 NFL Draft? 

  • My top speed, route running, existing knowledge of the game (ability to find space), dedication to the game and hunger to learn. 

At what age were you first interested in the sport of football?
  • I have been interested in football since I can remember, but some of the first vivid football memories that I have are when I was about 6 years old watching the rams with my dad when they first drafted Steven Jackson and watching Adrian Peterson highlights on repeat when he first started in the league. 

What is one thing that NFL teams should know about you?

  • I have always been intrinsically motivated to be an athlete, and for the majority of my childhood I taught myself and three younger brothers how to perform sports on a high level with input from family and friends, but was not given the chance to play competitively because it was too pricey for my family at the time. I was able to become skilled at most sports and am a naturally athletic individual with a large athletic skill set. I narrowed my focus to football at 17 in order to maximize my chances at being a pro football player.

If you could donate to one cause in the world, what would it be? 

  • A humanitarian relief cause

What is the best advice you have ever received? 

  • Once my Mom told me to enjoy being a kid because before I knew it I’d be grown, and while simple, it has always reminded me to appreciate what I have in the moment and not worry too much about things that I can not control. 

Who was your childhood hero?

  • My childhood hero was my dad

Who is the most underrated teammate in your locker room at your school? 

What is your biggest pet peeve? 

  • People chewing loudly or making repetitive noise when I am trying to focus

Overcoming adversity is what defines character, what was the hardest moment in your life to overcome? 

  • I moved to Alaska when I was ten leaving behind all my friends and family, then moved back when I turned fifteen, leaving behind the new friends and family. 

Tell me something about your school and why it is so special to you?

  • Waterloo is considered the Silicon Valley of the north and it is rapidly growing and steadily increasing in value, it is also a math school and I am great at math so it fits my educational preferences. What makes Waterloo so special to me is its exceptional educational standards and outstanding reputation which are recognized on a global level. 

What is your favorite snack food? 

What is the best part of football? 

  • The comradery and relationships built with teammates and coaches that can last for a lifetime. 

If you could sell yourself in one sentence what would you say? 

  • I am a young, ambitious, hardworking receiver whose aim is to achieve excellence by consistently giving it my all and pushing those around me to do the same. 

If you could compare your play to one player in the NFL who would it be? 

If you could have dinner with three people dead or alive, who would it be and why? 

NFL Draft Diamonds was created to assist the underdogs playing the sport. We call them diamonds in the rough. My name is Damond Talbot, I have worked extremely hard to help hundreds of small school players over the past several years, and will continue my mission. We have several contributors on this site, and if they contribute their name and contact will be in the piece above. You can email me at [email protected]

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