Night of Champions

Night of Champions Provides Personal Bests & Records Approximately 400 Cowboy fans were in Gallagher-Iba Arean to watch the conclusion on the OSU football summer program with the third annual Night of Champions. The crowd, which also included other Cowboys players and several recruits including Dallas Kimball defensive tackle DeMarcus Granger and Tyler Lee offensive lineman Ciron Black, cheered on 18 athletes that either jumped or lifted.

The highlights of the night came on the bench where Cowboy fullback Shawn Willis became the first 500 pound bench presser in some time in the program. Willis topped his previous personal best of 450 pounds this past spring with the 500 pound lift. He also had bests this summer in the squat with 655 pounds and the hang clean with 397 pounds.

(Sam Mays) The other four players on the bench press all topped personal bests as offensive lineman Corey Curtis lifted 485 pounds (previous best 405). Linebacker Pagitte McGee put up 435 pounds (previous best 405). Walkon defensive tackle Cody Townsend threw up 405 pounds (previous best 340). Deep snapper and special teams player Brian Jeffries, despite missing half the summer and losing 15 pounds at boot camp lifted 475 pounds (previous best 440 pounds).

(Donovan Woods) In all, this summer the squad had 17 players, believed to be the most ever, top 400 pounds on the bench press.

In the back squat lift, tight end Billy Bajema set a record for OSU tight ends with a squat max lift of 675 pounds over his former best of 585 pounds. Bajema also had max lifts this past week of 365 on the bench and 354 on the hang clean.

Strength and conditioning coach Gary Calcagno praised wide receiver Tommy Devereaux as much as anybody as Devereaux hit 475 pounds on the squat, 35 pounds over his previous max and 305 pounds more than his body weight of 170.

Quarterback Jamie Beeghley maxed out at 475 on the squat topping his previous best of 400. Senior defensive tackle Clay Coe nearly bent the bar as he pushed up 650 pounds. That was 50 pounds over his previous best. Coe also had a max on the bench of 410 pounds. Safety Jamar Ransom was just as impressive as he threw up 600 pounds. Ransom had a 400 pound bench and 340 pound hang clean this past week.

There were 20 Cowboys that topped out at 500 pounds or more on the squat this summer.

Just three players particpated in the vertical jump, the first time it has been included in Night of Champions. Paul Francis had a 38.5 inch performance that was very impressive. Safety Grant Jones climbed to 39 inches, and defensive end Jerry Don Bray, all 270 pounds of him, jumped 32 inches.

(Greg Jones) There are 31 Cowboys who had verticals of 30 inches or more this summer.

The crowd moved downstairs for the hang clean and saw quarterback Donovan Woods top his previous best of 266 pounds with a lift of 275. Woods had a great summer as he benched 350 pounds and had a squat of 425.

D'Juan Woods was stopped by the staff at 300 pounds on the hang clean because they didn't want him to get hurt. The sophomore wide receiver also had a best of 335 pounds on the bench and 435 pounds on the squat.

279484 (Julius Corsslin) Others in the hang clean included a much bigger and stronger Julius Corsslin. The redshirt freshman fullback lifted 315 pounds on the clean and had a bench of 455 pounds and a squat of 505. Preseason All American offensive guard Sam Mayes has lost 40 pounds, but still got stronger with 353 pounds on the clean. He also had a 385 pound bench and a 505 pound squat. Defensive tackle Darnell Smith may be undersized at 360 pounds, but he is strong. He cleaned 353 pounds, benched 465, and had a squat max of 625 pounds.

On the clean there were 21 players on the squad that topped 300 pounds or more this summer.

Gary Calcagno said it was by far the best summer ever with the numbers and all the newcomers that participated. His staff including associate head coach David Deets, Tracy Bladwin, and Ashlee Richmond were very pleased.

The crowd was hoping that newcomer defensive tackle Walter Thomas would lift, but athletic department officials were concerned that it might be a violation of NCAA rules since he is not on scholarship yet asked that he be held out. We do know that Walter maxed out at 405 on the bench, 600 on the squat, and 310 on the hang clean. Not bad for a true freshman.

Players now have off until reporting day on Sunday, Aug. 8.

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