To commemorate 100 days until the start of college football season, CBS Sports' Bruce Feldman released his "Freaks List: The 20 craziest athletes in college football." The list highlights the "top workout warriors or players who amaze their teammates and coaches with what they can do in the weight room, on the track or in some other 'wow' aspect of athleticism." The list features players like Jadeveon Clowney and Ra'Shede Hegeman and other players that have hit the weights hard this offseason, impressing their coaches and teammates alike. Clocking in at No. 3 on the list is our very own Lache Seastrunk. Feldman highlights some of Seastrunk's off-the-field improvements like his weight gain since coming on campus (195 to 210), his vertical improvement this offseason (42.5" to 44.2"—impressive given the short timeframe), and his 4.36 40 time.
Feldman also talks up the wide receiver corps, highlighting the fact that each of Baylor's receivers have been clocked at sub-4.4 40 times on the way to giving Baylor "Freak Team Status." Very exciting stuff.
For all of the excitement about the players, it's Strength and Conditioning Coach Kaz Kazadi that shines in the article. When asked about whether the 40 times at Baylor were electronic or hand-timed, Coach Kaz provided what may be the quote of the entire offseason:
"They're all electronic," Kazadi said. "We don't hand-time anything. Hand times are for your mama. Your mama don't work here. We're not hand-timing anything around here. We encourage people to come watch our guys work. They take this seriously."
Simply amazing. Kaz goes on to talk about focusing on power to increase speed, and moving players away from the thought that weight is the enemy of speed. His report on Seastrunk's efforts this offseason is glowing, remarking that Seastrunk is buying into the process both physically and mentally, taking responsibility both in weight training and "accountability and reliability." There's a lot there to get very excited about, Baylor fans.
Go check out the full article here. Meanwhile, regarding Coach Kaz, I think Mark summed up his worth to the program quite accurately and succinctly:
Kaz Kazadi = worth his weight in gold. Most underrated aspect to Baylor's resurgence under Briles, easily.— OurDailyBears (@OurDailyBears) May 21, 2013
Feldman followed up talk of freak players with an article about how Baylor "got its Freak on." There's a lot more about Coach Kaz in that post, too. And he (Kaz) says the change began, predictably enough, with Robert Griffin III changing not only the way people viewed the program, but the way the program viewed itself. Players used to losing became used to working hard. It's a great look at how you can build a program without the recruiting or the history of an Alabama. You do it by taking the players you can get and extracting every ounce of talent, speed, and size. You do it by taking players who don't know how good they can be and making them that good.
Had I the power, I'd rename this blog "Hand Times Are For Your Mama" and never look back. ODB would become HTAFYM. We'd have to work on the acronym.