VIDEO: Meet Indiana Freshman Cornerback Tiawan Mullen
Indiana freshman cornerback Tiawan Mullen met with the media for the first time Wednesday afternoon to discuss exciting times for his family, the transition from high school to IU and more.
Watch his full comments in the embedded media player above, with a complete transcript available below.
How has the transition been the last two weeks?
"The last couple of weeks have been smooth. Coach Ballou has been getting our body right. So it's been a great transition from high school to college."
How tough have the workouts been?
"The workouts have been tough, but I came up prepared. Not too prepared, but ... I didn't know what (Coach Ballou) was doing back at home, so I did enough for me to be in shape."
How much did having an older brother that's been through college football help you prepare for the mental and physical change in demands at this level?
"He talked to me about that a lot, because he told me in college there are more bigger and faster guys. There's that saying, bigger, stronger, faster. Working on Coaching Ballou's system is getting me prepared for that situation."
How much did the amount of Florida guys on the roster play a role in your decision?
"I mean, there was guys from back home, but it didn't play a role in my decision to come here because either way, (even) if there wasn't any Florida guys, I was still coming to play for Coach Allen."
Your older brother got drafted by the Raiders and is starting his NFL career. Your cousin is Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson. You're starting your college career. How exciting of a time is this for you and your family?
"It's great for our family. They're doing great, positive things, because where we come from, not a lot of times you make it out. My brother and my cousin made it out. It's an honor, and the city and everybody back home appreciates them for that."
What do you mean by that - helped you get out?
"Yeah, like, they don't make it out from where we come from. It's hard. The city, the people back home appreciate them making chances and providing hope for others back home."
What did they teach you?
"They taught me hard work and dedication. Be patient, stay loyal and eat crumbs."
You mentioned a brother at Clemson, a cousin who won a Heisman Trophy, you stuck with Indiana. What was it about IU that made it the right place for IU?
"Going to my official visits to other schools, it was just the feeling. I was meant to be here. Not saying other places wasn't meant, but God had plans for me to come here and help Coach Allen change the program around with other guys on the team, great guys on the team, to make this thing get rolling."
Do you feel like a little bit of leader in your class? You were pretty vocal with your recruiting efforts on social media once you committed.
"I was just trying to bring guys along with me, along with my talent, along with my leadership, to change the program around. You're as good as the guys around you, that's what I believe in."
You talk about eat crumbs. How do you do that?
"Grinding late nights, in the playbook, fresh start from school. When I say stay loyal and eat crumbs, I mean you have to do the little things. Not just going to practice, you have to have practice outside of practice. When the coach is yelling at you, you just have to brush it off and get back to it because he just wants it better for you."
What's it like going up against guys like Donavan, Nick, Whop and Ty Fryfogle in 7-on-7s? How's it going for you?
"It's going very well. We're competing and winning here and there. We're all competing."
Which guys in the secondary group have helped you out?
"I'd say all the guys. All the guys put input on me, they tell me about the playbook and then I'll go back to my dorm room and read the playbook, things like that. All the guys are helpful."