50 for 50 – Len Bias’ Golden Moments #12…Adding Strength

Through Nov. 18, Len Bias’ 50th birthday, the Born Ready Blog will provide each day a new item that helped define Len’s legacy, 50 in total.

A Commitment to Strength

The summer after his sophomore season, Bias started working out in the weight room with Maryland’s football players. He spent a lot of time following the lead of Maryland tight end Ferrell Edmunds, a rising sophomore who later played seven seasons in the NFL and made two Pro Bowl teams. Edmunds remembers that college basketball players back then mostly avoided strength training, instead opting for extra work on a treadmill or an exercise bicycle. Bias preferred the strength work, at times performing high repetitions of the bench press with 225 pounds. “He would do a lot of reps, not a lot of weight, for endurance,” says Edmunds. “It was foreign then to see a basketball player working out with the football players.He would challenge us. If you did 15 reps, and he thought he could do it, he’d try and beat you. He loved competition. He was challenged by everybody.”

Frank Costello was Maryland’s strength and conditioning coach at the time. “He had it all,” says Costello. “He was off the charts in everything. He was fast, he was agile, his vertical jump was on another level – definitely over 40 inches. When we did agility work, he made everything look so easy. He was a perfect guy to train. He tried hard. He didn’t miss workouts. He was always on time and did everything he was asked to do. You remember these things. Some guys are like pulling teeth to work out. Not Len. He was a pleasure to work with.”

Bias_cover_pngExcerpted from the book, Born Ready: the Mixed Legacy of Len Bias

Learn about the Born Ready Project that teaches life skills, using Len’s legacy as a teaching tool.

BornReadyLogo_Finalv2b (1)Find out about the Born Ready Hoops Festival  Nov. 22-24, that will honor Len’s legacy as a basketball player.

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