To say he’s an interesting individual would be to shortchange James Smith, the skill position physical preparation coach for the Pitt football program.
When a student in my Pitt sports writing class this past fall offered that he would like to do a feature story on strength and conditioning coach Buddy Morris, I suggested instead that the student focus on Smith because of the unique perspective he brings to his career, as well as his life.
Smith brought to the Panthers the philosophy of a man who graduated cum laude from Berklee College of Music, spent five years in the U.S. Navy and trained with the SEALs, authored a book with UFC star Randy Couture and has studied Eastern bloc strength training techniques.
So it’s worth sharing that Smith’s innovative training techniques with Pitt’s skill position players are told in a story by Muscle and Fitness. The story explains his philosophy and gives credit for his role in the successful seasons of All-American tight end Dorin Dickerson, the Big East offensive player of the year, tailback Dion Lewis, and a pair of first-team All-Big East selections in quarterback Bill Stull and receiver Jonathan Baldwin.