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Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Charles Takes Training to Next Level

Happy birthday wishes go out today to Georgia's freshman All-America tight end Orson Charles, who turns 19.

Another year older and a year of experience under his belt means fans are obviously excited about what Charles will contribute next season to Georgia's offense, but he's hardly resting on his laurels following a freshman campaign in which he caught 23 passes for 374 yards and three TDs.

In fact, quite the opposite.

Charles is taking a military science course this semester that's required for his major. During the course, his teacher spent some time discussing the training that Army ROTC members on campus participate in and encouraged students to give it a try. Never one to pass up on a challenge, Charles accepted.

"I took a little of it in high school, but I never really got serious, so I decided to just go ahead and do it and see how I'm feeling," Charles said. "So that's what I've been doing."

Every Monday, Wednesday and Friday for the past three weeks, Charles has been getting up at 5:30 in the morning and heading out for PT with members of the UGA ROTC. And while he assumed going into it that he was already in pretty good shape, the early morning workouts have helped to open his eyes.

"It's definitely different than football -- way different," Charles said. "In football, the most you'll probably run is probably 200 (yards) back and forth. They go miles and miles and miles, and my whole method is just trying to keep up with them. … You go out there and find out you're not in shape."

The running is no jog through the park, Charles said. Each day, he reports for PT at 5:50 a.m. and runs -- either through campus or laps indoors -- about four miles, he said. Motivation is the key.

"You've got to talk to yourself when you're running with them," Charles said.

Of course, hard work is nothing new for Charles, who is doing the ROTC PT in addition to his daily workouts with the football team.

Charles isn't using football as a crutch though. In fact, while a few people have recognized him, he's made a point of keeping his career on the gridiron under wraps.

"I'm not sure if they know I'm on the football team," Charles said of the ROTC students he's been working with. "I just told them I have that class, and my teacher just recommended we come out there. I don't really go out there and tell them I'm on the football team. I had a couple people write me on Facebook saying that I had motivated them. I know a couple people that I told them I was coming out there, and they didn't believe me. My teacher said that on the first PT. So I'm surprising a lot of people."

He's surprising himself a bit, too, and that's what it's all about for Charles. He hopes the extra training will get him in better shape for football, but really, it was just about pushing himself.

"It's more something I wanted to see if I could do, see if I could beat my mind," Charles said. "Your mind says don't get or it's not worth it. I wanted to see if I could do that. Hopefully it rubs off on football."


gene said...

This guy is something special.

dcdawg79 said...

gene - Could not agree more.


That's the kind of heart that makes me proud to be a Bulldawg fan, and gives me chills thinking about the limitless success UGA could have if that attitude became the norm for players on the team.

HounDog said...

Did anyone else develop a giant man-crush on Charles this year. I'm thinking of changing my daughter's name to Orson

Dr. Peter Venkman said...

The Fan's Voice Awarads has an interview with the Peanut Butter Kid:

Quite a look into the mind of a fan

Ludakit said...

Some of his comments remind me of a former Dawg who was never one to pass up a challenge of any sort, loves to compete, and is always pushing himself daily.

That guy I'm referencing? His last name is Walker, I believe.

Chance said...


You aren't the only one. He's one helluva athlete and he seems like a good kid to boot.

I fully support you're efforts in amending your daughters name.

bz said...

This makes me think all the better about Orson, who I loved already but unfortunately less about our strength and conditioning program.