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Wednesday, May 22, 2013
Hageman tops among Big Ten 'freaks'

By Brian Bennett

CBSSports.com's Bruce Feldman has come out with his popular annual "Freaks" list, which examines the top workout warriors in college football.

Feldman lists 20 freakish athletes, and it includes three Big Ten players. Checking in at No. 2 in the rankings, behind only South Carolina superhuman Jadeveon Clowney, is Minnesota senior defensive tackle Ra'Shede Hageman.

We've written before about the otherworldly physical gifts of Hageman, who appears locked in for a big season this year. Here's what Feldman writes about the giant Gopher:
"The 6-6, 312-pound converted tight end vertical jumped 36 inches this offseason when the Gophers tested him. More impressively, the former basketball standout (he used to play AAU ball against first-rounder Royce White) says he can still do a 360 dunk even though he's well over three bills. "But," Hageman adds, "it doesn't look as pretty as when I was 250." ...

Not only does he have the 36-inch vert, but he also has bench-pressed 465 pounds and clocked an electronically timed 10-yard sprint in 1.57 seconds. For comparison sake, no DT at this year's NFL Combine jumped higher than 33 inches, and Terron Armstead, the offensive tackle who ran the blazing 4.71 40 at the combine, did a 1.64 in his 10."

Hageman has a chance to be the top defensive tackle in the Big Ten this year if he can take another leap like he did last season.

Michigan left tackle Taylor Lewan ranks No. 4 among the freaks.
"According to Wolverines strength coach Aaron Wellman, Lewan has clocked an electronically-timed 4.8 40-yard dash. The Arizona native has also, despite his long arms, bench pressed 275 pounds 21 times and also squats 550 pounds. In addition, this offseason Lewan improved his vertical jump to 29 inches, up from 26 last year."

Rounding out the Big Ten contingent among the freaks is Wisconsin linebacker Chris Borland at No. 9.
"Borland does a standstill box jump of 51 inches, said strength coach Evan Simon. "He can also do a standing back flip at will and one time landed one in the splits for fun. He is as solid as two rocks and one of the hardest workers you'll find."

"Not only that, Badger insiders say Borland has also been known to kick 40-yard field goals, practice catching balls either with one hand or behind his back out of the jugs gun and can throw the ball about 50 yards on a line."

Auburn fullback Jay Prosch, who played at Illinois from 2010-11, made the freaks list for a second straight year, checking in at No. 20.