This week's workouts had a little less volume than regular, but not by much. And even though we may have toned down the running a bit to save our legs for fall camp, the weather was hotter and muggier than ever so it easily made the workouts feel harder than ever.
As we wrap up our final workouts, I want to acknowledge some "workout warriors" that have been steady all summer.
Travis Long is a guy who epitomizes the word "tough." We are in the same workout group and he is the unquestioned leader by example of that crew. Whenever things get tough or a competition or drill gets heated, he is the one that always stands out and comes out on top. You can't throw anything at that kid without him spitting it out and asking for more.
Jared Byers is another one of those guys that is cut from the same cloth as Travis. He may not be the biggest or most athletic, but he more than makes up for it with his strength, determination, and effort. Easily one of the hardest workers and toughest guys on our team, Jared is the ultimate team player and one guy that you do not want to meet in the hole. If there were a poll taken of our team of guys that you would want to have with you on the battlefield, I think these two guys would be the runaway winners.
On the lighter side, I want to spend some time and talk about what the Cougs like to do when we are not working out or playing football. One of the first things that comes to my mind… eating.
In order to be a successful player at the college level, you have to eat, eat and eat. With the amount of hard work and sweat that we put in on a daily basis, virtually everyone on the team must eat upwards of 7,000 calories per day just to maintain weight. Guys looking to add 5-10 pounds are routinely asked to eat over 10,000 calories a day.
That's a lot of food, but luckily Pullman has a lot of good places to eat. The Coug favorites around town include; Cougar Country, Subway, Loco Grinz, Domino's and the newly opened Red Bento. It's not unusual for us to go in to a restaurant, sit down and eat, and also order a plate to go to eat as a snack later.
Some of us even fancy ourselves as up-and-coming chefs. Whenever my roommates and I decide to stay in and make something ourselves, we usually go for tacos/enchiladas, grill up burgers and hot dogs or homemade pizza.
If I had to choose, I would say the best chef on the team is Taylor Meighen. He's a southeastern Texas boy and has his unique southern take on every dish he makes. It's really fun to sample his stuff because I always get a kick out of trying new things and seeing how people cook differently around the country.
My runner-up in the chef category would be running back/return man Leon Brooks. He is always a guy who likes to stay in and make his own food, constantly changing up the recipe and adding his own flavors and spices. He definitely has a knack for making things in the kitchen.
Now its time to answer some final questions from last week.
HendersonCoug: A question I have for you is as you get ready to complete your college experience what aspect of the previous 4 years of college has had the biggest impact on you as either a person or player?
I can't think of just one single person or player that has had the most significant impact on me over the last four years, I think every person I have met has had some sort of impact on my growth and development. But I think the thing I have learned most throughout my four years as a Cougar is that Cougar Pride runs deep and the mantra of Once A Coug, Always A Coug is extremely accurate. To hear the outpouring of support from any Coug that myself or my teammates come into contact with -- no matter where we go -- is a really cool deal and a special experience to have.
Bobo6: When you guys are coming out of the tunnel in Provo, who do you think is going to be the biggest mad man bouncing off the walls, whooping and hollering and who will have the silent but violent game face that you know you shouldn't mess with?
This is a great question! I think the guy making the most noise trying to get everyone pumped up will be Eric Oertel. He always has an energy about him and is one of the main vocal leaders of the defense. Whether Eric is coming after Hulk Hogan or the opposing team's quarterback, he always has the same intensity and such a determination to succeed. The silent assassin is definitely Travis Long. On game days he is usually one of the most quiet and reserved guys, sitting in his locker listening to music and getting ready. But when he steps on to the field he unleashes a different person and I think that really helps him be such a great player.
As noted earlier, this is my last diary entry for Cougfan.com this summer. This has been a lot of fun to do and I really do appreciate all the support and positive feedback that you guys have provided both myself and the team over the entire summer. I hope you enjoyed reading these diaries as much as I enjoyed writing them. I can't wait to see all of you guys in full force at all of our games -- and selling out all of our home games -- to give us the home field advantage in Martin Stadium and CenturyLink Field.