WWE Superstar Titus O'Neil recently appeared as a guest on The Two Man Power Trip Of Wrestling for an in-depth interview. Featured below are some of the highlights.
On what drives him to be so charitable and helpful to his community outside of the wrestling business: "I feel like anything that I start I am going to be successful at it because there was a time when I was younger that I was told that I'd never graduate from high school, I'll be dead or in jail by the time I'm 16, I'll never go to college because I was too dumb, too uncoordinated in sports and once I started at a very young age of accomplishing the things that people told me I'd never do (like) now you can't tell me what can't be done. I've been homeless, I'm a product of a rape, my Mom had me at a young age, and we've lived in government housing, gone without many days and I stand here today as a proud college graduate, an Ambassador for my University and for numerous organizations and charities, I'm a proud father of two sons and I'm doing it because I said I was going to do it. The things that I have control over and I say that I am going to do...I do them.
"I am very fortunate to have a lot of great people and a lot of great affiliations with people that have significant platforms and reach and I value the relationships with them and they value the relationships with me and that is why I can continue to do what I do on a consistent basis because I am not concerned whether a person is black, white, Hispanic or gay or straight or religious or not religious that doesn't motivate me. What motivates me is that there were some people that invested in me at a very young age that had nothing to gain in return and now everyday when I get up I just return and give them a return on their investment by saving and helping as many kids and families and people as I possibly can through various channels whether it is social media or through philanthropy efforts and fundraising or awareness. I know why I am here and I know why I am in the position that I am in and it is not because I am the best wrestler (I'm not a wrestler) I'll be the first one to say it, John Cena would be the first one to say he's not a wrestler, he's a performer and most people that get an idea that this is a scripted product, they could make a water bottle the WWE World Heavyweight Champion if they chose to so I'm a champion regardless of I have a title behind my name or not and I've been that way for a very long time not just with WWE but with my mindset. WWE is what I do for a living it is not who I am for a living and I tell everybody that I come in contact with to not be defined by your job, don't be defined by your profession, don't be defined by where you went to school (you know) you will define yourself with what you have been given."
On what he feels the keys to his longevity in WWE are: "The first couple of years I would get frustrated if I wasn't in a certain position. But now it doesn't matter what position I'm in because I am apart of the largest sports and entertainment company when it comes to wrestling in the world and I have so many things I can do within this company on multiple platforms that whether I am a champion or not I am going to be me and if being me yields opportunity than I am all for it but if they don't I'm still all for it because at the end of the day it's longevity. I've been here longer than a lot of the people wrestled their entire lives that came to the WWE for just a couple of years and they wouldn't help me when I first got here. They were jerks and they are not here anymore but I am still here.
"You take pride in that there are other people around you that are working their ass off week in and week out backstage, back in Stamford, around the world to make this product the best they possibly can and to make it be presented the best way they possibly can and I take pride in that. Sometimes when I come to work and I'm not booked I used to get pissed off but I say cool I'll just go do something else because I came here to work. I didn't come here to eat catering or just hang out (because) I am away from my family and I am away from my friends and the different things that I do (my businesses) and I am not going to come up here just to like coast through. I can do a million other things and make great money doing them but while I am here with WWE I am going to be the greatest asset I can possibly be to the company and I think that is echoed by Apollo and by Dana and fortunately for all of us we have found something for all of us inside Titus Worldwide and we can have fun, the people around us can have fun and we can go out and just be ourselves."
On Darren Young and The Prime Time Players: "I say this every chance that I get about Darren Young (we benefited from each other) but Darren Young is the guy that would get in the ring with me when nobody else would. He would help me and he would stay after class in FCW, he would do matches with me and he is legitimately one of my best friends and I am forever grateful to him for not only embracing doing something different because he is a wrestler at heart and I was constantly talking to him about being an entertainer and you've got to have character. That is what sells. You can be the greatest wrestler and put on a five star match but if you can't entertain people and people aren't invested in you you are not going to go very far. All we did was take elements from football (the swing from side to side) that is a football thing and everything we did the number one thing at the forefront of it was lets be the most entertaining tag team that we could possibly be.
"In our opinion we were unceremoniously separated to start with and we felt like we had a lot left to offer and we got separated and hadn't won the titles and hadn't done anything with much significance so the second time around to win the titles and winning it in front of guys that I consider friends like Urban Meyer and his coaching staff at Ohio State made it even more special."
Check out the complete episode of The Two Man Power Trip Of Wrestling featuring the Titus O'Neil interview at Podomatic.com.