PSU news by
Penn State's student blog

Topics

About

10 Questions with Walter Football: NFL Draft Expert And Penn State Alumnus

We recently caught up with Penn State alumnus Walter Cherepinsky (@walterfootball), who runs a popular mock draft and fantasy football site WalterFootball.com. Cherepinsky started the site in October 1999 and has seen it expand tremendously since then. The site currently works with Yardbarker, a subsidiary of FOX Sports. The website features NFL Draft analysis, fantasy football advice, and a whole lot more, including humorous sections like Jerks of the Week.

Onward State: What made you want to start a website devoted to mock drafts and fantasy football when there are hundreds of them on the Internet, and how has it grown since you first started it?

Walter Cherepinsky: I actually started the Web site as a high school senior in my Internet class back in the fall of 1999. We were asked to make a site about something we liked, and I love football. But I don’t think the thought process of “there are hundreds of something, so I shouldn’t do it” should deter anyone from doing what they love or really want to do. Think about Google and Facebook; they came out when Yahoo and Myspace existed. That didn’t stop them.

OS:  By the time the draft rolls around, you have a complete seven round draft. With how much parity there is during the draft, how accurate are your predictions every year? 

WC: Drafts are difficult to predict because of trades, but I think I do a good job of making accurate selections. I spend a lot of time studying the teams and I have some sources that come through, so that really helped me this past April. I think outside of Mike Mayock’s, my mock was the most accurate out of all the major publications.

OS: How do you go about scouting/evaluating players, and what do you usually look for when you do that?

WC: I wouldn’t say I’m a scout. I watch all of the games and have sources that my NFL Draft writer Charlie Campbell and I talk to in order to allow me to make projections on my site. I see what I see by watching games, and then I hear what some actual scouts say about players. Charlie also has great write-ups on all of the players. So I basically consolidate all of the information.

OS: What do you think about Allen Robinson’s draft prospects this year? Could he possibly be a first or second rounder if he declares?

WC: I have Allen Robinson atop Round 3 right now to the Jets, but I’ve been trying to slot him in the second round. He has a chance to be a late first-rounder, but he’ll probably be chosen in the second.

OS: It’s a few years away, but have you started evaluating Christian Hackenberg as a prospect? What do you see in him, and how high in the draft do you think he can go?

WC: I normally wouldn’t look at freshmen, but I’ve been able to watch him as a Penn State alum. It’s obviously way too early, and a lot can happen over the next three years, but right now, I’d be willing to predict that Christian Hackenberg will be a first-round pick.

OS: As a graduate, how closely do you follow Penn State football when your job is to look at football games objectively?

WC: I don’t watch as many Penn State games as I’d like to because I have to keep track of everything else, but I’ll always try to catch parts of Penn State games I don’t have to cover. I’ll obviously watch all of the big games because they’ll include multiple draft prospects.

OS: What is your favorite Penn State football memory from your time here? 

WC: Without a doubt, it was Penn State’s victory over Ohio State in 2005. The Nittany Lions were undefeated then, but they were underdogs against the Buckeyes. It was a “White Out” game, and it was the first big matchup Penn State had when I was a student because the team wasn’t very good from 2000-2004. It was cold, dark and rainy, but everyone was going nuts after a big victory. That was definitely a magical fall. That team was fun to root for. Not only were they great, but they had so many good guys like Michael Robinson and Tamba Hali.

OS: Was there anything from your time at Penn State that made you want to get into the fantasy football/NFL mock draft world?

WC: I changed my major after my eighth semester at Penn State. It’s rare to switch majors that late, but I struggled with computer science and I really wanted to do something I liked. I always loved writing about football, so I figured it would be a good idea to do that. However, I wasn’t sure if I could cut it as a full-time football writer. Some of the journalism professors here were great, including Mike Poorman and Bill Reed, and they helped me immeasurably.

OS: You also do a ton of stuff with fantasy football. How much work goes into analyzing/predicting/ranking how players will do every week?

WC: It’s a ton of work. During the season, I say I work about 80 hours per week. I watch all the games and try to read all of the news clippings. I can’t complain though because I used to do this for fun.

OS: If you could be a dinosaur, what kind of dinosaur would you be and why?

WC: I’d say a Brontosaurus. Everyone says I wasn’t real, so I’d love to prove everyone wrong.

About the Author

Comments

More by Meghan

Six Championships in Eight Years? 2014 Women’s Volleyball Preview

Dominance is a strong word in sports. But even that word might not do justice to the remarkable 2013 of the Penn State women’s volleyball team, who looks to repeat its performance in 2014.

Distraction of the Day: Shola Franklin Takes On The Sleds

Penn State Defense Isn’t Scared of Another Transition

Athletics

North Dakota Interested In Playing Against Penn State Hockey In Nashville

North Dakota is working towards an agreement that will see its hockey team play against Penn State in Nashville during the 2020-21 season.

Former Cal Swimmer Says She Emailed Sandy Barbour About Sexual Harassment Claims

Max Sauve Commits To Penn State Hockey

Penn State Women’s Volleyball Releases 2018 Schedule

Penn State Hoops Alumnus Joonas Suotamo’s Journey To Becoming Chewbacca Featured On ESPN’s ‘E:60’

Student Life

Penn State Love Stories: A Chance Meeting On A Service Trip

When Abby Wilt went on a service trip to Nassau, Bahamas, she had no idea she’d meet the love of her life.

10 Questions With 2019 Class Gift Director Tom Beeby

Career Services To Launch Integrated Career Management & Recruiting Platform

Plans Submitted For New KFC In State College

Developers have submitted preliminary land development plans to build a new KFC restaurant at 1780 S. Atherton St. in State College.

State Theatre Recognized As A State College Historic Site

As it approaches the 80th anniversary of its opening, the State Theatre has been recognized as a State College historic site.

Penn State Love Stories: A Chance Meeting On A Service Trip

When Abby Wilt went on a service trip to Nassau, Bahamas, she had no idea she’d meet the love of her life.

Be the first to know

  • Top posts and the best Penn State stories

Thank you for subscribing.

Something went wrong.

10 Questions With 2019 Class Gift Director Tom Beeby

Tom Beeby will serve as the 2019 Class Gift Executive Director.

Send this to a friend