Linemen have to be tough. They’re the only players on the field who are guaranteed to get hit (or ideally, deliver hits) on every single play. To survive in the trenches, you need to be strong. But strength alone isn’t enough—you also have to be quick, agile, and well balanced.
Well big men, today is your lucky day. Why? Because today is when you meet Hans Straub, the new head strength and conditioning coach for the University of South Florida. Straub joined USF this year after serving on the strength staff of the Stanford Cardinal football program, whose defense led the nation in sacks (with 57) and led the Pac-12 in several categories, including points allowed (17 per game) and total defense (opponents averaged only 336 yards against the Cardinal).
Straub’s off-season strength training program is designed to make you a stronger, more powerful athlete. To dominate the line of scrimmage next fall, you need to train right this summer. Click the link below to download Straub’s training plan, and remember the mission statement for USF’s offseason strength program: “To be a champion, you cannot do things right once in a while, you have to do it right all the time.”
Summer Training Guidelines
For every lift, your priorities should be (in order):
- Speed of movement (with full control of the weight)
- Resistance level
If the reps of an exercise decrease on the next set, challenge yourself to increase your training weight.
If the reps of an exercise increase on the week, challenge yourself to keep the same training weight but improve your technique.
If the reps of an exercise decrease on the next week, challenge yourself to increase your training weight.
Decelerate resistance (barbell, dumbbell, body weight) with control on the way down. Accelerate with control on the way up to finish the rep.
Record your reps for max reps exercises, and record the weight for any exercise that you use a weight other than your body weight.
Work down the card, pairing lower body movements with upper body movements, working to improve your overall tempo each week.
Perform a dynamic warm-up before and cool-down stretching after every workout.
DB Standing T.Y.I Raise w/ Thumbs Up
Stand with your feet shoulder width apart and knees slightly bent, holding lightweight dumbbells at your sides with your arms straight. Raise your arms to your sides until they are parallel to the ground with your thumbs pointing up. Lower your arms to the start position. Perform a second raise with your arms at a 45-degree angle with your body, and a third raise with your arms directly in front of your shoulders. Repeat this pattern for the specified number of reps.
Trap Bar Deadlift
Dead Bug Series (R/R, L/L, R/L, L/R, All 4)
Dumbbell Sumo Squat
Lay on the ground with your legs straight and perpendicular to the ground, and your arms out to your sides. Slowly lower your right leg until it’s six inches above the ground. Raise your right leg to return to the start position. Perform a second rep with your leg at a 45-degree angle with your body, and a third rep with your leg at a 90-degree angle with your body. Repeat for the specified number of reps, and perform with your left leg.
Power Clean + Shrug
Incline Bench Press
Glute Ham Raise
Two-Arm DB Row
Barbell Front Squat
You can also download summer training guides for skill players (QB, RB, DE and WR) and big skill players (LB, TE, FB) for free.