The speed required for Rutgers offensively includes everyone, including 344-pound offensive linemen. In an offense where, “you have to be able to sprint at all times” Rutgers sophomore Tariq Cole took fitness to the next step in the offseason.
Cole teamed with Rutgers strength and conditioning head Kenny Parker. The result was a 31-pound drop to 313 by the second week of spring camp.
“He’s kind of a certain father figure in a type of way that has you always eating right,” Cole said. “If you need to gain weight, he’s going to make you gain weight. If you come in under weight, you have to chug water. If you come in overweight, do cardio. He’s always on it. He wants everybody to have great bodies during the season.”
Cole spent the majority of spring camp as a first-team left tackle, but also worked on the right side following J.J. Denman’s mid-camp injury. Cole played primarily guard under Kyle Flood.
“Being a left tackle is a lot more kick-stepping back,” Cole said. “I’m used to short steps. At left tackle, I have to throw all of my legs back and go.”