Pro Football player Tory Cooper sits down with Pro Athlete 360 in a four part interview. He discusses many topics ranging from the recruiting process to the steps you need to take to make it on the pro level. In this part of the interview, Tory Cooper discusses transitioning from high school to college football. He discusses what one can expect when stepping onto the college football stage and gives a heads up on the differences in skill level and strategies.
Football Video Transcription: Every college athlete knows it’s a full-time job. Year-round, the difference is they get specific in football, speed is a big difference. Everyone's fast in Division I, everyone sharp, everyone's bigger than the high school players. One thing that I would say about my position playing running back, the difference between high school and college, it was actually easier for me in college to run because in high school everything is messy, everything is all over the place. In college everything is cleaned up, you have better coaching, more time to focus on the details, everything is cleaned up, all the holes are there or not there, everything is pretty much clean. So as a running back, personally I think I was better in college than I was in high school. With the type of offense, the type of running back, your running style, different offenses and situations and plays that you get put in.
You can be like me, I'm more of a scat back, can catch out of the backfield, can run out of the backfield, but I'm not the guy that's going to be on the goal line trying to plunge in at 4th and 2 on the goal line, I more of the sweep and toss kind of guy. On the outside or a swing pass. But as far as the weight room the difference between high school and college, college is a whole different story, it's more about speed, it's more detailed. In high school you don't have too much time so you have a whole team of maybe 80 guys, you’re doing the basic lifts, you’re doing the basic power lifts. In college you have more time, and it's year-round it's focused on speed, power, explosion, positional drills, what's best for your position and basically your role on the football field. There was stuff I never seen here before, chains, and resistance training, on squat you put chains off the end of the bar so we got to the top of the squat you get that extra push of resistance. The bands on the bench press, you tie rubber bands from the floor to the bench press and do repetitions, high repetitions with them. Speed drills, a lot of 40 stuff. For example you lie down on your stomach and they the blow the whistle, you get up and spread, and that works on you staying low in your stance. Keeping everything low as far as gravity.
The day after the game we would squat hard and then go out and condition. And mainly the conditioning part was to get your body back, getting beat up in the game, you're running 75 to 80 plays, the next day you're going to need to get the blood flowing, and get the soreness out, do some sprinting. Summer workouts, and off-season training, most of the football guys we had summer school because we had practiced all year so we had to cut our daily schedules short. So everyone did pretty much full-time, 15 hours of summer school since you were down here for the summer already, it was basically a requirement to stay during summer. 5:30 AM workout, Monday through Friday, we used to do agility stuff, sport specific stuff, a lot of competition stuff. A lot of challenges, a lot of teambuilding stuff a lot of bonding in the morning and a lot of speed work. Then after that we would go to the field and do modified 110s and basically was sprinting 110 yards and depending on your position you have a time limit. So running backs and linebackers had between 16 and 18 seconds to make it from one end to another, and you have a 30 second rest in between so yeah it was pretty tough.
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