Xavier Woods is featured in a new article on Sports Illustrated's "Extra Mustard" blog. In it, he discusses the origins of his UpUpDownDown YouTube channel and his desire to help Kofi Kingston become WWE World Heavyweight Champion. Below are the highlights:
What were the origins of UpUpDownDown?
“I sacrifice sleep to do it. Originally, I wanted to do a Travel Channel show. Normally, if we’re staying in a town before a show, I’ll go to a barcade. Those are dive bars that have tons of arcades, since there aren’t a ton of arcades where kids can put quarters in games and actually have that kind of arcade experience. Barcades are for those people who lived through that generation, and I pitched a show for the Network where I’d go to these different places each week.”
How did it evolve into what it is?
“We merged the ideas and came up with a YouTube gaming channel,” said Woods. “I always have my carrying case–it’s called a GAEMS case, and has my PS4 in it and a built-in TV–and so we put together a gaming channel. The first couple episodes where me and Kofi [Kingston] playing FIFA, and the loser had to eat hot peppers. It was stuff that we were already doing, but now we’re filming it and putting on a little punishment at the end. We’ve been branching out and connecting with other YouTubers, other arcades, and other gaming people. We’re learning what’s good, what’s bad, the connections to use with the systems and TVs, and it’s been a very eye-opening experience.”
How did gaming help him become more social as a child?
“I didn’t have very many friends growing up. I was very much a nerd, I read comic books, and I wanted to do well in school. I didn’t have any social skills at all, but my mom noticed I was way more vocal when I had a Nintendo controller in my hand. So she’d set up play dates with other kids to come over and play video games. She said I was like a circuit that was finally completed because I was holding a controller, and another kid was holding a controller, and I finally connected with somebody else and opened up my doors of social activity.”
How is his work for his PhD going?
“It’s intense. I’m actually transferring schools right now. I had 135 credits and was doing my dissertation in educational psychology, but now I’m transferring to Capella University and start on January 11. They’re taking 25 of my 135 credits, and it will probably take me another three-and-a-half years to finish.”
Who does he want to help win the WWE World Heavyweight Title?
“‘Stone Cold’ explained that if you’re not trying to be heavyweight champion, then you’re in the wrong business. That’s interesting to me because my goal is to make sure Kofi becomes heavyweight champion. He is the guy who absolutely deserves it over anyone else in the company. My long-term goal is to help, in whatever way I can, Kofi become heavyweight champion.”
CLICK HERE to read the full interview.