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Rick Stroud, Greg Auman and Matt Baker

Gerald McCoy heading home to gear up for training camp



Bucs first-round pick Gerald McCoy has big plans now that Tampa Bay's offseason program has ended with the conclusion of mini-camp.

And those plans don't involve weeks spent on sandy beaches.

Rather, McCoy said he will head home to join his college teammates in their preseason preparation at the University of Oklahoma. There, McCoy said, he will engage in what he described as incredibly intense workouts, for which Oklahoma is renowned.

"A lot of people have heard how intense our summer workouts are," McCoy said. "I’m going to go back and get involved with those to get me in shape so when I come back I’ll be in shape in camp.

"Our workouts are so intense. Our strength coach, Jimmy Smith, he’s built a little hill called Mount Smitty. The hill is like torture. He’s like a military-based trainer. He’s been with coach (Bob) Stoops for a long time."

This is good news if you're a Bucs fan. It's not breaking news that McCoy needs to have a big year if the defense is going to improve from its dreadful performance in 2009. And given the toll the Florida heat takes on linemen, who carry more weight than any other players, they need to be in incredible shape. One thing is certain: If a player comes into camp out of shape, it quickly becomes very, very obvious. If McCoy believes working at Oklahoma can get him prepared, then so be it.

"You’ve never seen Oklahoma lose a game because we were out of shape," he said. "We’ve lost games because we played badly or got beat. We never lose a game because we’re out of shape. That’s due to the strength and conditioning program."

[Last modified: Monday, July 19, 2010 2:42pm]


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