Etefia, Pettway await their chance

Two men have one mission on April 22 and 23: to get drafted. These two men are Aqua Etefia and Kenneth Pettway. Both spent the entire season, preparing for the draft. They have succeeded as they both have received numerous rewards.

One of those rewards was being some of the few that can say that they have played for both Doug Williams and Melvin Spears.

“I got a chance to play for Doug Williams for one year, and Coach Spears for one year,” Pettway, a Houston native, said.

“It’s [Spear’s] first year as a head coach, and it’s a big deal to him to be able to send more than one player to the NFL.

“This is an honor and real privilege for me.”

Spears has adopted the slogan for the football program to be “Raising The Bar,” and Etefia believes that they have done that.

“Raising the bar exemplifies more than one thing,” Etefia said. “It means raising character and social standpoints.” Etefia, a Miami, FL native, also said that it took him a while before he could proudly wear the “G” that many take for granted.

“It’s hard to get that G,” Etefia commented. “My first year, I didn’t have a G. I just got a G this year, and I’ve been here for three years. “It’s a test, and you have to keep working hard.”

While both have worked hard all throughout the season, the rewards are beginning to pay off. Both were invited to the recent series of NFL Combines, in which scouts took a glimpse of who they could be drafting. Some notable teams are the New Orleans Saints, New England Patriots, Oakland Raiders, and Kansas City Chiefs.

All of these teams have a tradition of adding on to their already storied franchise; therefore, it makes sense for Pettway and Etefia to believe that they are ready for the challenge.

“Once you get to the pro levels, you’ve reached the top,” Pettway stated.

As the draft kicks in gear for April 22 – 23, Pettway and Etefia will be awaiting to hear the results. While many draftees are immediately blinded by money, both already have plans as to using their success wisely.

“Everybody wants to buy houses and bling bling,” Etefia said. “I would thank God first, though. I want to get my mom a house and get her out of the hood.”

Pettway has another way of celebrating.

“First thing I’m going to do is thank God,” Pettway said. “I’ll be with my mom and some of my best friends. We’ll have a nice little party, which will celebrate me being drafted.”

Pettway also understands that his hard work is not in vain.

“Nothing comes easy” Pettway said. “You have to work as hard as the next man. If you don’t, the next man will work just as hard, and you will be on the same level or even behind him.

“If you have the will to go out there to do it, nothing will stop you.”

Etefia definitely has the will and motivation.

“My motivation to do my best is to get away from the struggle,” Etefia explains. “I’m trying to make a difference in my community. My motivation is getting away from the ghetto [in Miami].”

Etefia also explained how he would help his community. He said that he would start a foundation that would help keep the children off of the streets and give them positive roles in life.

“I’m working on a foundation with former Green Bay [Packers] defensive back Mike McKenzie,” he said. “I can’t take care of the whole community, but I will help out where I can.”

With many college players entering the draft, one has to consider one thing about the NFL.

“It’s not promised,” Etefia said. “The NFL is not promised to any player. If it’s destined for me, then it’s for me.”

While it may not be for everyone, Pettway is sure he will be ready to play with All Stars such as Brett Favre and Randy Moss. “

After you get over being nervous and getting over playing with the star players, you will adjust to the coach,” Pettway said. “If you want to play in the NFL, you will learn how to play the coach’s way.”