The Athletic & Personal Development program, known around IMG's campus as IPI, definitely builds character. In this case, it literally molded the 6"9 frame of Derrick Caracter into a new type of athlete. With the help of nutritionists and performance specialists, Caracter has a new outlook on training and is now prepared for his pre-draft workouts which lead up to the NBA Draft located in Madison Square Garden on June 24th.
The first couple words that come to mind when thinking about Derrick Caracter is "raw talent". Coming out of high school, Caracter was touted as one the top prospects in the nation. Before the new rule in the NBA stating a player must go to college for at least a year, most thought Caracter would be a "lebron-type talent" heading straight into the pros. His path since then has been atypical for a player with so much potential. He had struggles at the University of Louisville and eventually transferred to UTEP where he produced better numbers this past year. However, the professional staff at the Athletic & Personal Development program knew Caracter could still improve by leaps and bounds.
For performance specialist Corey Stenstrup, the most important thing for Caracter was to get him, "out of a college routine and into a more professional routine". The main goal was to keep his playable strength while helping him improve on court movement. Stenstrup accomplished his goal by doing drills designed to work on stability and core. Yoga, pool work, and resistance training were all used to "lean out" Caracter and get him into better playing shape.
Although the weight training at IMG was tough for Caracter, the nutrition portion of his development was just as challenging. Dr. Sally Parsonage was instrumental in Caracter's weight loss during his time at IMG. Dr. Parsonage said the key for Derrick was to focus on, "his day-to-day eating habits and the timing of his meals". When Caracter came to IMG, he was 30 pounds overweight and had a lot of body fat. After controlling his eating, he has slimmed down by 30 pounds and only has 13% body fat. Dr. Parsonage was very impressed with his transformation and noted that he, "looked like a different athlete...and has really taken ownership of his professional routine and eating habits".
For Derrick Caracter, the sky is the limit. Although he still truly is, "a great character" according to Dr. Parsonage, his work ethic can no longer be questioned. It will be exciting to see how Caracter continues his success at the next level in the NBA!