Kansas University’s two biggest returning basketball big men are faring well in the weight room this offseason.
l Jeff Withey, a 7-foot junior-to-be from San Diego, has put on 12 pounds since the March 27 conclusion of the 2010-11 campaign and now weighs 230.
l Thomas Robinson, a 6-9 junior-to-be from Washington, D.C., weighs 242 compared to last season’s 237.
“Our goal for Jeff is 240, which I think is a very capable goal for Jeff,” said Andrea Hudy, KU assistant athletic director for sports performance. “We’re working with him hard on flexibility and nutrition. We’re trying to feed him as much as we can,” she added, noting Withey recently had a weightroom snatch mark of 176 pounds.
“For a 7-footer ... a snatch of 176 is pretty impressive,” she said.
Robinson, meanwhile, continues to sculpt his massive body.
“Thomas came to KU at 218 (summer before freshman year). He’s put on 24 pounds,” Hudy said, noting Robinson hang-cleaned 300 pounds two weeks ago.
“We don’t want him as big as possible. We need him to run and run efficiently,” Hudy added. “We don’t want him to lose speed for the sake of putting on muscle mass. There’s a fine line. We need to keep an eye on his performance on the court (in relation to weight).”
As a group, the Jayhawks have impressed since the conclusion of the season, Hudy indicated.
“The guys are pretty intense. It’s not like we are keeping them forever (but) the sessions are intense. They are staying on task,” Hudy said of weight training four or five times a week. “These guys ... they train 48 weeks a year. So we change our intensity. It is not all high intensity stuff, but they are around a lot.”
Aside from the regular weekday training sessions, “I’m on call,” Hudy said. “If they want to do extra, they know I’m here. You’ll get guys come in and work (extra) on things they need to whether it is flexibility, speed development, lateral movement. Our upperclassmen have been doing really well.”
Hudy, who has been at KU seven years, will play host to KU’s third-annual Midwest Sports Performance Conference Friday and Saturday at Anderson Family Strength and Conditioning Center. Registration forms are available at http://www.kuathletics.com/genrel/010511aaa.html.
“This could be considered a national conference in caliber of speakers and presenters,” Hudy said.
Keynote speaker is Mary Ellen Clark, a two-time Olympic bronze medalist in diving. William Kraemer, one of the top researchers in the world in the field of resistance training; Jerry Martin, the strength and conditioning coordinator at UConn; and Andrew Fry, chair of KU’s department of health, sport and exercise sciences will be joined by many others including K-State director of strength and conditioning Chris Dawson.
“We try to run a good clinic that is intimate. People get to talk to whomever is here. They are not on a big stage,” Hudy said. “There are things you can take away into personal training sessions, high school sessions, college sessions, recreational sessions.”