Kory Woodruff is an offensive lineman who stands at 6-foot-5 and weighs 330 pounds. He is from Sioux City, Iowa where he played for Briar Cliff, one of the local NAIA teams for before coming to Pittsburg State for his junior and senior season. In high school he was a two-time Iowa Class 4A All-State performer at Sioux City West High School and a three-time All-Conference selection for the Wolverines.
He is a first-generation college graduate. Woodruff is looking to be the first person from Sioux City, Iowa to play in the NFL modern era and the first since 1932 to play in the NFL, when Hal Griffen played for the Portsmouth Spartans (whom moved to become the Detroit Lions in 1934).
We caught up with Woodruff to talk his NAIA and D2 career and the path to the 2023 NFL Draft.
1. Who was your biggest influence when it comes to the game of football?
When it comes to the game of football, my biggest influence would be my parents. Early on in life I remember my dad sitting down and watching football, mostly the Miami Dolphins. I also remember my mom playing catch with me with anything in the house. When she was doing laundry, she would throw balled up socks at me and things like that. I have also seen pictures of me at a young age playing basketball on mini hoops and hitting baseballs off of a mini tee, so really, I enjoyed any type of sport since I was young.
2. You could be one of the first players that played for Sioux City West High School and in professional football, what does that mean for you?
Being one of the first players out of Sioux City West to play in the NFL would be a tremendous honor and something that I do not take lightly. More so, it would mean more to me that all the current kids there have one of their own to look up to. I also want them to know that if they truly put their mind to it, then they can make it also. I take great pride in my community, and I will be giving back anyway I can in the future.
3. Playing for the one of the hometown NAIA team was a big deal, how hard was it to move away from family and end up playing at Pittsburg State?
It was a big deal when I committed to Briar Cliff, a hometown school, and it brought big buzz at the NAIA level. When I transferred to Pitt State, it was very hard moving away from my family. Moving to Pittsburg was the first time that I lived outside of my family home and away from them. What made it easier was having this goal in mind and knowing that I was coming here to handle business. My parents, family and my girlfriend made the transition seamless for me and for that I am grateful.
4. Between now and the draft, what are some goals that you want to achieve?
Between now and the draft, the most important thing I want to achieve is becoming the best version of myself. I will give my all every day during training and I will put the outcome in God’s hands and let the chips fall.
5. If an NFL GM were to sit down in front of you and you had to convince them to draft or sign you, what would you say?
If a GM sat down in front of me and I had to convince them to take a chance on me, the first thing I would bring up is my ability to change or raise the standard of the organization. Everywhere I have been, at any level, I have raised the standard. Not only on the field but in the weight room and in film sessions. The second thing I would bring up is my physical attributes. I am standing at 6’5, 335 pounds and that does not just grow on trees. I move well laterally, I am physical at point of attack, and I am athletic in space and dominate. With them attributes I can play and will dominate in any scheme. The last thing I would bring up is the tape. Film does not lie and although there are definite things I need to work on, for 50+ starts in my career I can confidently say that I have dominated.
6. What has been the biggest surprise so far throughout your collegiate career, like something you did not expect or just blew your mind?
My biggest surprise in college so far is when I moved up to the D2 level from the NAIA level. At the beginning of my transition, I lost confidence. I was second guessing myself and asking myself if I could really compete at this level. The more I practiced and got to see D2 football I realized that I was dominating at this level too.
7. If you had to give advice to someone on a similar path to yours, what would you say to them?
If I had to give advice to someone following the same path as me, it would simply be to never give up and to never doubt yourself. Belief in yourself is very important and it can make or break you. I would also suggest that you find God. God has blessed me with everything that I have now. All glory and grace go to Him.
8. What do you consider the best restaurant in Sioux City, Iowa?
The best restaurant in Sioux City is La Juanitas. Great food and awesome customer service.
9. What do you consider the best restaurant in Pittsburg, Kansas?
The best restaurant in Pittsburg would have to be Anna’s Tacos. If you could not tell I like Mexican food.
- GPAC 3x All Conference (Best NAIA Conference)
- NAIA All American
- NAIA Breakthrough Athlete
- 2x BCU Team Captain
- MIAA 2x All Conference (Best D2 Conference)
- D2 All American
- Gene Upshaw Award Nominee (Best lineman in D2)
- D2Football Elite 100
- Pitt State Team Captain
- MIAA Champion