The Man in the Mirror: Pollard transforms his body after making position change

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Pollard has embraced the move to center
Pollard has embraced the move to center

CLEMSON – Clemson center Sean Pollard was walking by a mirror following spring practice, and he didn’t like what he saw. He saw a football player who was too heavy and not healthy, so he decided to do something about it.

This past week, a leaner and healthier Pollard spoke with the media about his transition from an offensive lineman that carried too much weight – he said he was around 333 pounds at the end of the spring – to the 302-pound player you see today.

“After this spring, I looked at myself in the mirror I looked at myself and said, 'You're not who you need to be. You don't look good and you don't look healthy and you have more stomach than an offensive lineman should.' Granted, offensive linemen should have some stomach, that's kind of part of the gig,” Pollard told TigerNet. “But I looked at myself and thought I didn't look healthy. I went to our strength coaches and our chef and said I need to put more muscle on and I need to lose this weight so I will feel better in general. I dropped 25 pounds of fat and I've gained almost 20 pounds of muscle throughout the summer. I just feel better and camp is going a lot easier. I feel better and I'm healthier.”

Dropping the weight – and keeping it off – has been easier and cheaper than Pollard imagined. Meal prepping is key.

“I’d meal prep for like every week. It’s actually relatively cheap,” Pollard said. “I can meal prep a whole week of dinners for like 25 bucks. It’s not gonna taste the best, like you can put as many spices and stuff you want on it, but at the end of the day, you’re eating chicken every single day, so it can get old. But it’s a job, like you’re not enjoying it. Your job is to fuel your body. A lot of people eat for taste and that’s where all the bad stuff gets added. They add the sugar, they add the salt, they add a lot more stuff they shouldn’t. When you’re eating for fuel, you need to make sure you properly minimize that stuff and make sure you get good protein and carbs before you work out and less trans-fat in general.”

Pollard has made another change, moving to center after experimenting at the position against Notre Dame in the Cotton Bowl.

“I didn’t wait, first of all. I was told when to go over there. I’ve been telling Coach (Robbie) Caldwell since I was a freshman, ‘I can snap, I can snap.’ And he says, ‘Nah, no you can’t.’ I can. He joked about that the other day. But it’s been fun. I’ve enjoyed it a lot. I like being a mental player. I like knowing what everybody’s doing, and me moving from tackle all the way to center, I know what everybody’s doing on the offensive line, so it helps me as a player overall. I know if I make this call, then I know what the tackle’s doing and I know how the guard’s going to react at this point.

“It’s just been fun, I’ve really enjoyed it. This has been my best year so far. I’ve had a positive outlook on everything. I said it in the spring, it’s a new position, new Sean, and that’s just how I’m taking it. Just striving, working on everything every day, one play at a time, and trying to be the best for this team that I can be.”

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