When Oregon linebacker Tyson Coleman arrived in Eugene two years ago from Lake Oswego High School he weighed in at a meager 199 pounds.
Talk to any defensive coordinator and position coach and they’ll tell you that’s considered slender if you’re looking to be a successful linebacker at the college football level and above.
While Coleman had speed and agility, it was the size he lacked to compete at the highest level.
“Ive been trying to gain weight ever since I got here” admitted Coleman when asked about his increase in size.
“When I first got here I was 199 lbs and that was way to small to be a linebacker. It’s been a goal,…and last off-season I just got tired of being pushed around so I said I’m going to do this.”
And do this he did.
After ending the 2013 season at about 207 lbs, Coleman made a commitment to spend more time in the weight room lifting as well as eating significant portions of solid foods.
“This year I’m 235 ( lbs ) so I’ve put on quite a bit of weight” said Coleman.
“I started lifting with Joe Walker ( Jr. ILB ) and Mike Garrity ( Sr. OLB ). They lift hard and take every little detail pretty seriously so I just started lifting with those guys and eating a lot. I ate a lot of beef and chicken.”
Speed ( or lack of ) was also important to Coleman. Having gained a significant amount of weight, Coleman made it a point ‘not’ to lose his agility and speed.
“Actually I feel like I got faster” said Coleman.
“I used to hate doing squats and that kind of leg work and Joe ( Walker ) that’s pretty much his thing. I just started doing it with him and he pushed me and I feel like I got faster and more explosive with that.”
VIDEO: Watch the Tyson Coleman interview by clicking on the video box above.