Workdays beginearlier for the slimmed-down Big Baby. At 8:30 a.m. on an October Tuesday, GlenDavis is the lone player toiling under the dome of LSU's Pete Maravich AssemblyCenter, sweating in a purple long-sleeved T-shirt as he puts up jumpers. Heheads to the gym for these 50-minute sessions--extra work on top of the Tigers'afternoon practices--at least twice a week. Many other mornings he greets theday with a bowl of organic oatmeal at Christina's Restaurant in downtown BatonRouge. "Last year at 8:30," Davis says, "I'd usually be sleeping.Crashed out."
The supersizedBaby of last season thrived--he was SEC player of the year, led the Tigers tothe Final Four and charmed the nation with his ebullience. But the joyrideended in Indianapolis. UCLA ran Davis ragged, he fouled out with 14 points on5-of-17 shooting in a 59--45 defeat, and his NBA draft stock wasn't loftyenough to warrant a jump. The 6'9" Davis took a week off from basketball,then stepped on a scale and faced the truth: "I was freakin' heavy."Like 347 pounds heavy, after starting the season at 310. "The way I played,I felt like that loss was my fault," he says. "I decided to change mybody, and I got to work."
The day after hislast exam, in May, Davis bolted for Houston and entered what he callsTerminator Baby mode--so dubbed not only because he'd be back in Baton Rougefor his junior season but also because he worked out with Schwarzeneggerianzeal. Davis spent each morning training with former NBA player and coach JohnLucas at Bellaire High School before playing pickup games at Fonde CommunityCenter with the likes of T.J. Ford and Rashard Lewis. He would top off his dayby either lifting weights or running on Memorial Park's trails. When LSU coachJohn Brady met up with his star in July at the Nike camp in Indianapolis, hesaw a sub-300-pounder "who I could tell was proud of the way helooked."
Big Baby facesbig challenges: helping the Tigers defend their SEC title without Tyrus Thomas,leading the team to another run at a national title and proving to NBA scoutsthat with his more svelte frame he is now first-round material. Brady says it'sup to the coaches to help Davis "balance those expectations and still bethe carefree Big Baby who was dancing with a [feather] boa around his neckafter beating Texas to go to the Final Four." And it's up to Davis to keephis weight down: Right now he's around 290.
In a campuscafeteria later that Tuesday, his lunch is more fried than organic, but heexercises newfound restraint by limiting his portions. "I'm still hungry,man," he says, "but that means I'm not full. And that's a goodthing."
[This articlecontains a table. Please see hardcopy of magazine or PDF.]
|SF||Tasmin MITCHELL -- RETURNING STARTER||6'7"||Soph.||11.4 ppg||5.6 rpg|
|PF||Magnum ROLLE||6'10"||Soph.||2.2 ppg||2.5 rpg|
|C||Glen DAVIS -- RETURNING STARTER||6'9"||Jr.||18.6 ppg||9.7 rpg|
|SG||Dameon MASON*||6'5"||Jr.||11.9 ppg||5.6 rpg|
|PG||Garrett TEMPLE -- RETURNING STARTER||6'5"||Soph.||5.1 ppg||2.8 apg|
|F||Darnell LAZARE --KEY RESERVE--||6'8"||Sr.||6.7 ppg||48.9 FG%|
*2004--05 STATSFOR MARQUETTE
Will TasminMitchell become the scorer needed to complement Big Baby?... Can the Tigersfind a clutch outside shooter to replace Darrel Mitchell?... How effective willTack Minor be after missing most of last season with a knee injury?
Nov. 17 NichollsState
Nov. 25 WichitaState
Nov. 29 McNeeseState
Dec. 5 TexasA&M
Dec. 17 at OregonState
Dec. 20 atWashington
Dec. 23 LouisianaTech
Dec. 27 WrightState‚Ä°
Dec. 28 Miss.Valley State‚Ä°
Jan. 9 atAlabama
Jan. 17 OleMiss
Jan. 20 atArkansas
Jan. 28 atGeorgia
Feb. 3 atMississippi State
Feb. 6 atTennessee
Feb. 14 at OleMiss
Feb. 17Mississippi State
Feb. 20 atKentucky
Feb. 28 atAuburn
March 3 SouthCarolina
*New OrleansArena ‚Ä†Toyota Center, Houston ‚Ä°Hispanic College Fund Classic, Baton Rouge
COACH: John Brady(10th year)
SEC record: 14--2(first in West)
NCAA tournament:Final Four