Cody Is Big Man On UA Campus

Yes, Terrence Cody is big. But there are a lot of college football players who are 6-4 and 285 pounds. Oh, wait. Cody was 6-4, 285 when he entered high school. He got up to 420 in junior college. Now he's feeling light, 360.

Terrence Cody, 6-5, was excited to be considered a prospect for Alabama. He pinches himself every day, barely able to believe he was able to go from junior college to "a place like this. I didn't think a place like this would recruit junior college players." And he's almost surprised he was able to get it done.

Cody grew up in Fort Meyers, Fla., and had a limited football resume. Growing up, he was too big for his age group to play Pop Warner football. In high school he was able to play only two years, and didn't get to play his senior season. "Bad grades," he said, made him ineligible. Those same bad grades "and bad ACT, bad SAT" sent him to Gulf Coast (Miss.) Community College.

In junior college, one of his coaches was Stevon Moore, who had played for the Cleveland Browns when Saban was an assistant coach there. "He told me what to expect from Coach Saban," Cody said. "He told me he would push me to my full potential. I said I could handle that."

The first thing Cody heard from Saban was that Cody had to lose weight. And he did. He got on a program losing three pounds a week and reported for fall camp at 365. He's dropped another five since then. Now the goal is "maintain."

Cody acknowledges his celebrity status on campus. Students want to meet "Mount Cody," he said. He enjoys the attention, being called "ZIP Cody" and "the state of Cody," and he enjoys shaking hands with fellow students and answering their questions about Alabama football.

But Job One is playing nose tackle for the Tide. "I think I'm playing good," Cody said. "The coaches think I'm doing good. There are things I need to improve."

He has shown he can work. Cody said he thought there was a chance he would never play for Alabama because of "weight issues." He had to "do a lot of running and a lot of extra work. I had to get up early in the morning to do extra work. Every morning I'd wake up at six and hope that it was going to pay off, because getting up at that time of the morning was hell."

Now he's making life hell for opposing offenses. "For my size, I can do things other people can't," he said.

But he wants to set the record straight on that dunking the basketball stuff. Oh, he can dunk. But, "They exaggerated on the 360," he said of reports that he could do a 360-degree twist on his dunk.

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