March 21, 2007

The man at SAM

Coming out of Park Ridge (N.J.), Brian Cushing was rated as one of the nation's top athletes.

At 6-foot-4, 218-pounds, Cushing played running back, receiver, linebacker and safety at Bergen Catholic High School. He was a Renaissance man on the football field, using his talents to redefine each position he played.

Two years later, Cushing has maintained that versatility.

Starting as a true freshman in the national title game, Cushing played both weakside and strongside linebacker in 2005. Suffering from a severe shoulder dislocation that kept him from lifting weights most of the season, Cushing went from 230-pounds in fall camp to 212-pounds by kickoff against Texas.

Last year, Cushing made the move to Elephant linebacker, a position that acted as a hybrid linebacker and defensive end. Bulking back up to 250-pounds, the move to the line came with apprehension - away from public view.

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