April 10, 2007

Wildcats benefit from new strength coach

The effects continue to be felt by Kansas State players in the weight room and on the field. Their gains haven't gone unnoticed during spring practice, either. Seems the Wildcats have tackled a new specialized regimen under first-year head strength and conditioning coach Mike Kent, one that keeps them anxiously awaiting their next step in becoming a faster and stronger squad for the fall.

"It's different, but I can say it's a lot better," senior cornerback Justin McKinney said. "We were doing a lot of Olympic stuff last time. Now we're doing football-oriented stuff for quickness with 5-10-5s and 40s and we're running a lot of stuff in a small area trying to get a lot of quickness and explosion.

"I like that kind of stuff, especially at my position. It's great for me."

Kent arrived at K-State in the offseason after occupying the same position for three seasons at Pittsburg. The Sporting News visited Pitt in 2005 for a photo essay on the Panthers' summer training regimen. Prior to joining Pitt, Kent was at Louisville, where he oversaw the development of eight NFL draft selections for the two-time Conference USA champions.

Among Kent's stops, he served at Appalachian State as strength coordinator for 18 teams from 1990 to 1999. Second-year K-State coach Ron Prince played at Appalachian State between 1990 and 1991.

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