Big 12: Boyd Epley

Dobson reshaping Cornhuskers' storied weight program

May, 20, 2009

Posted by's Tim Griffin

Coming into the Nebraska football offices every day for James Dobson is akin to a pianist heading into Carnegie Hall.

Dobson feels like he's carrying on a unique tradition for the Cornhuskers, who pioneered the concepts of a modern strength and conditioning program with Boyd Epley's ground-breaking work back with the programs in the late 1960s.

"This is a very unique place for strength and conditioning," said Dobson, who arrived from Iowa several weeks after Bo Pelini was hired. "Boyd got it started and Mike Arthur really developed strength and conditioning into what it is today here. It's very special to be a part of it."

Despite that lofty and storied history, Dobson has been able to place his own stamp on the Nebraska program after only one season directing the strength and conditioning program.

Charged by Pelini to help develop speed, particularly for players in the offensive and defensive lines, Dobson instituted a plan to help his players in the trenches lose weight.

The result was improved performance in both groups by emphasizing leaner, quicker athletes in his first season. It paid off with a 9-4 record last season, capped by a Gator Bowl victory over Clemson.

That strong finish helped catapult the Cornhuskers through a strong second season in Dobson's program, building on their work of the first year there.

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