By Cadet Nate Brecklin
The Citadel is a school of pride when it comes most things, not to mention its NCAA Division I athletics program. High caliber athletes from all over the country — even the world — come here to compete for a job on his or her sports team, and every one of the athletes want to earn the respect that they cherish.
I have always believed that the body is a temple, and being a Citadel baseball player myself, the foundation of every sport comes with fundamentals.
That’s where it all really begins — at the start. That’s what you always go back to when you’re in a slump or a struggle. Fundamentals are the building blocks of success. And I don’t just mean on the field or the court, but especially in the weight room.
That’s what Coach Donnell Boucher, The Citadel’s head strength and conditioning coach, teaches us at the beginning of every semester. Building those fundamental blocks that help to keep you injury free and your body ready to take on any task your sport may throw at you.
Coach Donnell, who began his Citadel career as a graduate assistant in May 2007 and a specialist in just about every other strength and conditioning field there is, has helped Citadel athletes from all sports climb to their potential. With the help of his assistants, Coach D presents a sophisticated and healthy way to approach strength and conditioning towards athletics, catching the eyes of many other programs along the way.
The facilities of The Citadel’s Strength and Conditioning program consists of a full 5,500-square foot space for all varsity athletes to get those paws down and dirty before, during and after the long-awaited seasons. The ‘’Dawg Pound” is equipped with multiple squat and bench racks, free weight bum bells, rubber and iron plates, TRX band systems, and many of the state-of-the-art equipment to measure speed and athleticism.
The strength and conditioning program is run to make the athletes at The Citadel operate at their full potential through a system run and built around functional movement, speed, explosiveness and athleticism. The program keeps track of all athletes’ statistical attributes including weight, bench presses and squats, power clean, 40-yard dashes, vertical jumps, broad jumps and 60-yard shuttles. These are all taken to compare past and recent successes.
The strength and conditioning program is run in a topnotch facility by topnotch people for topnotch athletes, keeping the Dawgs hungry, healthy and ready to compete at any time and at any place.
Nate Brecklin, a baseball cadet-student-athlete from Eustis, Fla.., is a student in Andy Solomon’s Sport Communications class.