Beyond the Game: Michigan State commit Zach Slade talks Game of Thrones, spikeball and JJ Watt

Michigan State recruited Olentangy (Lewis Center, Ohio) defensive end Zach Slade for his football skills, but the Spartans will be getting an aggressive spikeball player as well.

The 6-foot-4 senior will arrive on campus soon enough with his twin brother, defensive tackle Jacob Slade. They won’t be the only twins on the team (Andrew and David Dowell), and they’re not the only twins in their immediate family.

Those are just a few tidbits about Zach, the slighter of the two Slades. Land of 10 caught up with him to learn more about the Spartans commit. Be sure to check out the last Beyond the Game article with linebacker commit Jeslord Boateng as well.

Q: How would your friends describe you off the field?

Slade: “Probably funny. I have … not a remote group of friends, but I hang out with a couple of guys a lot of the time. We have some pretty fun times. All those guys are pretty funny.”

Q: Is your brother in that group? Do you hang out with him a lot?

Slade: “Oh yeah. Of course he’s in that group.”

Q: So you guys are pretty tight?

Slade: “Oh yeah, we’re close.”

Q: Has it always been like that, or was there a time when you guys would fight a lot and weren’t that tight?

Slade: “I have three brothers — two sets of twins — and we shared a room together for a long time. One time I made him mad or something. I don’t even know what happened. But he wanted to move into the basement. He wanted to get away. When our brothers moved out because they’re older than us, he got one of their rooms, and yeah, we’re fine now.”

Q: Do your older brothers play sports, too?

Slade: “My older brothers are 20 now, and they’re both at Ohio State. My older brother Connor, he was really good in high school but he was really short. He was like 5-11, 5-10. He went up to OSU. He was going to go to [Division III] to play football because he didn’t get recruited for [Division I] because he didn’t have the size, but now he’s playing club football at Ohio State. And his twin, Kyler, he does club wrestling and he’s really good.”

Q: What would you do if you won $1 million?

Slade: “Honestly, my mom would probably tell me what to do because she is the boss right now. She is in charge. I would have no control of that $1 million.”

Q: Have you ever had a paying job?

Slade: “I’ve never had a paying job because my parents said as long as I keep working hard and get a scholarship for football, which happened, I never had to get a job.”

Q: What’s your dream vacation spot?

Slade: “The only vacation spot I’ve ever been to is Florida. I love Florida, but I really want to go to Hawaii or Alaska. My friend went on an Alaskan cruise, and Alaska sounds awesome.”

Q: Where in Florida did you go?

Slade: “Destin. We’ve been going to the same spot for seven or eight years.”

Q: What do you guys do there besides the typical hanging out on the beach?

Slade: “It’s an active town with a bunch of different stuff to do. We just hang around there most of the time and stay up there for a week. There are little apartments, and right when you walk out, the bay town is just alive all night.”

Q: What’s your go-to snack?

Slade: “Probably a LUNA Bar. It’s a protein bar. We’ve got like 19 boxes in our cabinet, and that’s all I eat.

Q: What’s your favorite flavor?

Slade: “Nutz over chocolate. My mom has 19 boxes of those, gluten-free and everything. All one flavor. No different flavors.”

Q: What TV show can’t you miss an episode of right now?

Slade: “Oh, Game of Thrones. It’s off now. The season just ended, but that’s my favorite show. It’s the best.”

Q: Have you been watching since the first season?

Slade: “Oh, no. I just started this summer and I binge-watched it in like two weeks. It’s so good.”

Q: I know there are like thousands of characters in it, but who would you say is your favorite?

Slade: “Probably Tyrion [Lannister]. He’s probably my favorite character. He’s hilarious. I’ve loved him since the first season, and I’ve always been rooting for him.”

Q: What’s your favorite movie?

Slade: “Recently I saw It. It was really good. Oh my gosh, that was a great movie. I’m a big scary movie guy, but that one was scary.”

Q: Since it was based on a Stephen King book, did you know anything about it going in?

Slade: “I just knew it was based off the book. I’ve never read the book. All I’ve seen is the clown in the drain and thought that was super scary.”

Q: What album, song or musician can you not stop listening to at the moment?

Slade: “I don’t really listen to music that much, but usually I just listen to whatever’s on [WLVQ-FM] 96.3, some classic rock. That’s about it.”

Q: So do you have a favorite band?

Slade: “Not really a favorite band. I like classic rock. I listen to AC/DC, Steven Tyler. I like most of them.”

Q: Do you listen to that stuff before a game, or do you not need it to get amped?

Slade: “I don’t really listen to music before a game. I can get ready for a game in like 10 minutes mentally, so I’m not really one of those guys you have to pump up. I can just go out there and play. It just kind of happens.”

Q: What’s your favorite subject in school?

Slade: “I’d probably have to say science.”

Q: Do you know if you’re going to go into something along those lines in college?

Slade: “I want to study kinesiology in college because I’m thinking about going into sports medicine or physical therapy, somewhere along those lines.”

Q: Do you have any interesting hidden talents, something people would be surprised to find out about you?

Slade: “I don’t know if you’re familiar with the game spikeball, but I play that all the time with my brothers. We go really hard at all sports we play, but especially spikeball. Spikeball’s the most fun.”

Q: Who would you say is your biggest role model?

Slade: “Football-wise, I’d have to say [Houston Texans defensive end] JJ Watt. And life-wise, I’d say my parents.”

Q: Obviously your parents are going to influence your life, but what in particular has made them your role models?

Slade: “They’ve always taught me to be humble and work. They work super hard. They’re some of the hardest workers I know, and that’s the way they taught me how to do everything. That’s why I look up to them.”

Q: If there was a movie made about your life, who would play you?

Slade: “Probably JJ Watt. I’ve been told I look like him, and he’s a role model I want to look up to. I guess I’m trying to be like him.”

The post Beyond the Game: Michigan State commit Zach Slade talks Game of Thrones, spikeball and JJ Watt appeared first on Land of 10.

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