Every year around this time, Bruce Feldman from CBS Sports comes out with one of my favorite offseason stories: his “freaks list” highlighting college football’s most impressive physical specimens by various measurements.
Inspired by his list, as well as his inclusion of Mississippi State linebacker Benardrick McKinney, I asked around about some other “freaks” Dan Mullen and Matt Balis might have on their team.
A special thank you to media relations man Kyle Niblett for helping acquire the information. Dude never sleeps. Just works and gives fist bumps.
Benardrick McKinney, sophomore middle linebacker, 6’5″, 240 pounds
The K.J. Wright look-a-like, McKinney weighed a wiry 216 pounds when he got to campus, but is now up to 240 with only 9.5% body fat. Two of his most impressive numbers: McKinney has a 41.5 inch vertical jump (higher than nearly every player at the 2013 NFL Combine, and beating every single receivers) and runs the 40-yard dash in 4.58 seconds, faster than many receivers and corners at The Combine.
McKinney can also do 30 pull-ups at his size, can leg press 1,100 pounds and has a broad jump of 9’10”.
Gabe Jackson, senior offensive guard, 6’3″,330 pounds
For my money, Jackson might be the most impressive freak on the list when you look at his numbers. One of the main events for linemen at the NFL Combine is benching 225 pounds as many times as possible. Jackson, still in college, managed 36 reps in his most recent outing, which would’ve tied him for fourth at this year’s Combine, just two reps out of first.
Jackson can squat 630 pounds and with his 330-pound frame, he has a 31-inch vertical jump and a nine-foot broad jump. That’s a nimble lineman.
LaDarius Perkins, senior running back, 5’8″, 191 pounds
My favorite number on Perkins: he did 25 reps of the 225-pound bench press. He benched something 34 POUNDS HEAVIER THAN HIM 25 times. More numbers on MSU’s muscle man: 515-pound max squat, 400-pound max bench, 37 1/2″ vertical jump, 10-foot broad jump and a 4.45 40-yard dash.
Jamerson Love, junior cornerback, 5’8″, 172 pounds
Quietly, Love is the fastest player on MSU’s team. In fact, he may be the second fastest rookie in the NFL this year. Love has been timed on campus with a 4.29 40-yard dash, which would’ve been the second-best time in The Combine this year. Love just finished his sophomore year.
More numbers: Love squats 495 pounds, benches 305 (nearly double his weight), has a 36-inch vertical jump and a 10’2″ broad jump.