11W Community Interview: IMG Academy Offensive Lineman Mirko Jurkovic, Jr.

By Jeremy Birmingham on March 8, 2015 at 11:15 am

The 11W Community Interview is truly of the people, by the people, and for the people. You submit the questions, vote on them, and then we pass the top ones on to the biggest names in the world of Ohio State athletics.

As the son of a Notre Dame legacy and a native of South Bend, Indiana, Mirko Jurkovic, Jr. knows a bit about pressure and high expectations. He transferred to the prestigious IMG Academy in Bradenton, Florida in an effort to solidify his standing as a big-time college football recruit and he did just that, earning scholarship offers from schools like Ohio State, Arkansas, Nebraska, Florida, South Carolina, Missouri and a host of others.

Jurkovic committed to the Cornhuskers in July, but amid coaching changes in Lincoln he made a career decision to flip his commitment to Ohio State in late November after an official visit to Columbus. He cited the family atmosphere and tight-knit bond of the players at Ohio State as a primary reason he selected the Buckeyes in early December.

Being that your father was an All American there and that you grew up in South Bend - how hard did you consider ND? Or were you trying to get out of there? - The

MJ: Obviously growing up in the backyard of Notre Dame, and having my dad play there was a big deal, but in the end it was my decision and I don’t need to be held to a legacy. I have no hate for Notre Dame, I wasn’t trying to “get out of there” but I think I found the best place in the country with Ohio State.

What expectations do you have for yourself for your first year on campus? - BuckeyeGrownFloridaLiving

MJ: I'm going there and I'm going to contribute in any way I can. Whatever the coaches have me doing, I'm going to do.

How did the transfer to IMG affect your recruitment and development? - JakeG14

MJ: The move to IMG affected my recruitment and development insanely. I was given the opportunity to train with the best. It really opened up the doors to a lot of colleges. For instance I know a lot of (Buckeye) fans won’t like it, but Taylor Lewan is down here right now, and were doing the same drills he’s doing, along side him. You don’t get that at your everyday high school.

How much did being taught by Ed Warinner, the offensive line guru, play into your decision to play for Ohio State? Or was the prestige of the school along with Urban Meyer what intrigued you most? - Buckeye4Life050233

MJ: Coach Warinner's resume and the talent he has produced played a huge role in my recruitment. The school and obviously Coach Meyer played a huge role as well. The biggest thing for me though was how I felt at Ohio State when I was on my visit, and I can’t wait to spend my next couple years up there.

Your father and uncle both had success playing football. How have you handled the expectations and the pressure to "follow in their footsteps”? - CajunBuckeye

MJ: I don’t view it as pressure, but rather motivation to do what I do. It drives me to be better.

If you had to pick one, what's the most important factor when deciding a school to attend? - BlockO330

MJ: The biggest thing for me was the teammates I’m going to be playing with. I’ll be spending most of my college career with those dudes, so I wanted to like the guys I’m going to be around. Coaches come and go, but your teammates are going to be there.

Which do you prefer run-blocking or pass protection and which do you think you need to improve the most? - Tussey

MJ: I prefer run blocking the most, and the thing I'm going to need to improve the most is pass blocking because I will be moving from right tackle to center so I need to get the techniques of it down. 

I can't wait to get up to Columbus and leave a mark. What I'm looking forward to the most is winning another National Championship for the Buckeyes.

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