Moseley feasts on opportunity
The most popular New Year's resolution is almost certainly to lose weight; that is unless you're a 145-pound cornerback moving onto a division one college campus.
The latter describes North Carolina native and University of Tennessee true freshman Emmanuel Moseley.
That was Moseley then. Now, the mid-term enrollee, who continues to work as a starting cornerback opposite of sophomore Cam Sutton, weighs somewhere between 175-180 depending on the day or number of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches consumed at the time he hits the scales.
For Moseley, the sandwiches were the catalyst to a transformation unlike any Vol fans have seen in a while. It was bread, lots and lots of bread. So much bread that Moseley consumed it out of the passenger seat of his car.
"Some days I ate a loaf of bread," Moseley explained. "Like one time, I was on my way back from a visit home in North Carolina. I grabbed a loaf of bread on the way here and just started eating."
Moseley ate, ate some more, sometimes as many as a half-dozen meals a day, drank some protein shakes, then drank some more. It was a pretty simple diet according to Vol nutritionist Allison Maurer.
"He ate a lot of bread. He ate more peanut butter and jelly sandwiches than the kid wanted to eat. But he knew that it was one of the things that was working, so he did it," Maurer, nationally recognized as one of college athletics' top nutritional experts, exclusively told VolQuest.com. "I would ask him if he liked it and he would say, 'I don't care if I like it or not; if you tell me I will eat it.' It was so easy with him.
"Then he had a lot of shakes. We made his shakes with whole milk, condensed milk, peanut butter and then extra muscle milk. The shake he had was like 1,000 calories. Then he would take a couple sandwiches home with him. We would make an extra 1,000-calorie shake to take home with him. We were definitely using whatever means we had to get the calories in him to have it either here or when he was in his dorm. I would say the shakes and the peanut butter sandwiches were the biggest things.
"I try not to give any of them a calorie number because they have too much to think about as it is. It was more (saying) 'Here's the times of day you can get calories and here's what you are going to do each time.' It was basically whatever means necessary aside from like a nacho cheese IV. We are going to get calories in you."
Moseley credits Maurer for teaching him the right way to eat and for showing him the path to nearing his goal weight of 185 pounds. Maurer said Moseley was the perfect pupil because of his drive.
"The first thing is the mid-year guys that came in, they came in ready to play," Maurer said. "So it didn't take much convincing to get him to understand that he needed to gain weight. I just credit it completely for buying in. The kid would come in and eat like six peanut butter and jelly sandwiches throughout the course of the day. He was making sure he was eating meals, going to the dining all and recovering properly. Anything I would tell him, he just did. So he's like a poster child for what you want someone to do. He came in ready and wanting to get to work."
Moseley admits he grew tired of the sandwiches, but he grew more tired of being shoved around during spring practice which made his focus over the summer even greater.
"From the spring, I was getting knocked down," Moseley said. "I wasn't making a lot of plays, but this fall I'm making more plays on the ball.
"That was the biggest adjustment putting on the weight and keeping my speed. I would put on weight and have to run some. Then I would lose some weight but had to gain it right back. It was hard but it was worth it."
And everyone is taking notice of the work he has put in, from teammates to coaches.
"He's making tremendous strides," sophomore Devaun Swafford offered. "In the weight room and both on the field. His technique is getting way better. He's way stronger than when he first came in."
Added head coach Butch Jones, "His style of play has never changed in terms of his swagger, his competitive nature, his instincts. But obviously he's playing a lot more physical just because of the added strength, now he needs continue to go. He can't play at this level at that weight, and he knows that and he's continued to work through it. Emmanuel Moseley is one of those individuals that's been great to see in training camp. He's been extremely consistent each and everyday. You know what you're getting with Emmanuel Moseley everyday. There's no bad days for Emmanuel Moseley."
Even if that day consists of a half-dozen PB&Js and a couple of rounds of 1,000-calorie protein shakes.