Before Soulja Boy was a multi-platinum selling hip hop artist, he was DeAndre Cortez Way, a talented wide receiver on a state championship football team.
And, yeah, ol’ No. 80 had hands like Velcro.
“I started off playing in the sixth grade,” Soulja Boy said. “We were undefeated. I was pretty good too.”
Good enough to play at the next level had he thrown his entire focus into succeeding on the gridiron?
“Anything’s possible,” Soulja Boy said with a laugh. “I did my thing when I played!”
We caught up with Soulja Boy to chop-it-up about everything from his upcoming album Draco to his highly anticipated boxing match with Chris Brown to why having Evander Holyfield training him will be a great advantage.
Jason Jordan: I always like to gauge the sports backgrounds and experiences of all of my guests on the Celeb Chop-Up; what sports did you try coming up?
Soulja Boy: I played football. I started off playing in the sixth grade and played through high school. I played wide receiver, No. 80. The team was real good. We were undefeated. We were state champs!
JJ: Nice! Everyone had a shining moment, tell me about yours on the field.
SB: Well, one game I was playing cornerback and I got an interception and ran it back for a touchdown. I had all the girls after the game and all that; it was crazy. Then another game, I was running the ball and I had a friend on the team that always blocked for me really good. He had a big block and I scored and my whole family was there and they all went crazy.
JJ: Sounds like you had some playmaking ability. Do you think that if you put all of your focus into football you could’ve played in college?
SB: Well, anything’s possible. Now that I’m older I probably see myself playing more basketball. I play in a lot of different celebrity games and charity games. But if I would’ve stuck with football maybe it would’ve worked out! The coaches loved me and I did my thing when I played.
JJ: Gotcha. Let’s take it random; which fast food restaurant has the best burgers?
SB: Maybe like Fat Burger or something like that. I can tell you that Checkers definitely has the best fries of all the fast food spots though!
JJ: Agreed there. In the epic game of Paper, Rock, Scissors which object do you find that you get the most wins with?
SB: (Laughs) Probably the scissors!
JJ: When you see a yellow traffic light what’s the first thing that pops into your head?
SB: Slow down!
JJ: What was your worst pre-fame job?
SB: Working at Burger King cooking burgers all day! That was crazy!
JJ: What movie absolutely deserves another installment?
SB: Probably Scarface! Starring Soulja Boy!
JJ: Naturally. What’s the most overused slang word or phrase out today?
SB: Probably “turn-up!”
JJ: President Obama’s Secret Service code name was Renegade, President Trump’s is Mogul; if you were President what would you pick your code name to be?
JJ: I knew you were gonna say that!
SB: (Laughs) Oh yeah!
JJ: You tap a car in a parking lot and no one’s around, do you move to a different row or do you leave a note?
SB: (Laughs) Oh we ain’t leaving no notes now! We’re gonna get outta there.
JJ: What sitcom intro song do you know every word to?
SB: Fresh Prince of Bel-Air.
JJ: What was your worst childhood punishment?
SB: Being grounded off the computer for like 10 months! That was the worst.
JJ: Unfortunately you’ve found yourself in the Witness Protection Program, what’s your new name going to be?
SB: (Laughs) Hmm, let’s go with Ferrari.
JJ: Now, Soulja, I’ve gotta tell you you’re probably gonna stick out with that name in the small Midwest town they have you living in.
SB: (Laughs) True, true!
JJ: Talk or text?
JJ: Blindfolded can you tell the difference between Pepsi and Coke?
SB: Mmm, that’s a good one. I think I can, I think I can. I feel like there’s more sugar in Pepsi.
JJ: If you could go back and get the truth about one past mystery which would you choose?
SB: That’s a great question! I would want to know how the pyramids were really built.
JJ: Good one. Let’s switch gears for a sec and talk about the big boxing match you’ve got coming up with Chris Brown. How’s your training going?
SB: It’s going good. It’s good for my body overall, not just for the fight. I’m adding muscle and everything. It’s intense though. I’ve got a love-hate relationship with training.
JJ: How often do you train?
SB: Every day.
JJ: And you’re training with Evander Holyfield?
JJ: It’s been reported that Chris Brown is training with Mike Tyson; do you think that gives you an edge since your trainer always beat his trainer when they met up in the ring?
SB: Well, they’re both champions and legends, but, like you said, just look at the facts; not taking anything away from Mike Tyson, but how are you gonna teach him to beat me when you couldn’t beat my guy? At the end of the day, when we get in the ring the best man’s gonna win. I just feel that I’m the best man.
JJ: Did you have any boxing experience before?
SB: In the streets. I got into fights in high school, knocking guys out in front of everybody and things like that. I’d thrown on the gloves before and boxed with a lot of different guys, but it wasn’t professional so, other than my knockouts in the streets, I haven’t really boxed.
JJ: What will your strengths be against Chris?
SB: I don’t really want to comment on that; that’s why I haven’t been releasing any videos. I don’t want to give anything away. I don’t want him studying me, but I definitely have some tricks up my sleeve and some power punches coming so I’ll just leave it at that.
JJ: Are you shocked at how many people are picking Chris Brown to win? Why do people think that?
SB: Yeah probably just because of his history of publicly attacking people. You don’t hear that with me; I don’t provoke violence and I don’t condone it, but if you bring it to me I’ll handle it. This whole boxing thing was his idea. They think he’s gonna win because he’s the one that initiated it and he’s the one with the history of domestic violence or punching somebody. They’re automatically going with the guy that’s punched somebody. The press on me was shooting somebody. I’m a rapper, I’m not an R&B singer. He’ll go into the ring underestimating me and we’ll see what happens.
JJ: Do we have a date for it yet?
SB: I don’t know if I can say the date yet, but it’s coming out soon. Trust me you’ll know soon.
JJ: Talk about your music and everything else you’ve got going on that fans can look forward to.
SB: Thanks man this was fun! Right now I’ve got King Soulja 7 out on Spotify, Apple Music, Itunes and all that. My next album is called Draco and I’ve been in the studio getting it right! You can expect that around April so look out for that. Go to YouTube.com/SouljaBoy I just dropped a new video called Draco, it’s already got 2 million downloads. We’re just working! The fight kinda took my focus off of the music for a little bit because I’ve been training so much, but I’m working at the same time. I just did three concerts and I’ve got shows coming up. I’m eating right, I’m training and I think 2017 is gonna be a good year. Also, checkout my new video game it’s called Soulja Boxing it’s in the App Store and you can download it right now. I want to thank you and USA Today! I love y’all, y’all have been very supportive ever since I started my career. I appreciate the love.
Follow Jason Jordan on Twitter: @JayJayUSATODAY