Terrence Cody - College Career - Alabama - 2009 Season

2009 Season

Prior to the 2009 season Cody dropped about 10 pounds and worked on his conditioning, hoping to keep himself in the game on third-down passing situations. He was often replaced by Josh Chapman on passing downs in 2008. Nick Saban stated Cody needed to reduce his weight to 340 pounds (150 kg) in order to become an every-down player and pass-rusher; he reported for fall practice at 354 pounds (161 kg), set a goal to reach 345 pounds (156 kg) by the season opener, and eventually dropped his weight to 349 pounds (158 kg). Only a couple of days before the first game, Cody and a few of his teammates were sidelined with flu-like symptoms. Cody returned after a three-day absence.

Cody was named to the 2009 Lombardi Award, Lott Trophy, and Outland Trophy pre-season watch lists. Rivals.com ranked him as the No. 1 defensive tackle in college football in 2009. On October 14, 2009, Cody and teammate Rolando McClain were announced as two of the twelve finalists for the 2009 Lombardi Award. Cody was also named to The Sporting News and CBS Sports midseason college football All-American teams.

In a game against Tennessee on October 24, Cody blocked his first two field goals of his career, including a 44-yard attempt in the game's final seconds, to secure Alabama's 12–10 win. According to Yahoo! Sports' national columnist Dan Wetzel, Cody earned himself Heisman Trophy consideration with his performance against the Volunteers. A couple of weeks later, Mike Hiserman of the Los Angeles Times also called for Heisman consideration for Cody, describing him as "the best player on what might be college football's top defense."

"Other than Suh, there might not be another player in college football who disrupts a game plan the way Cody does. is a wall-to-wall space occupier. It takes two, sometimes three, offensive linemen to keep him from pushing the pile into the backfield."

L.A. Times columnist Chris Dufresne.

On November 10, Cody was named one of four finalists for the Lombardi Award, alongside Jerry Hughes, Gerald McCoy and Ndamukong Suh. He was the seventh Crimson Tide player to be named a finalist and the second in a row, joining offensive tackle Andre Smith, who was a finalist for the award in 2008. Former All-American linebacker Cornelius Bennett was the only Alabama player to win the Lombardi Award, capturing the honor in 1986. In the end, Nebraska's Ndamukong Suh won the award. On November 19, Cody joined Pat Angerer, Eric Berry, Jerry Hughes and Ndamukong Suh as the five finalists for the 2009 Nagurski Trophy, but was again beat out by Suh for the award. On November 23, Cody, Brandon Spikes and Suh were announced as the three finalists for the 2009 Bednarik Award, which was eventually won by Suh as well.

In his two seasons at Alabama, Cody helped the Crimson Tide to lead the Southeastern Conference in rushing defense, allowing opponents a rushing average of only 78.8 and 78.1 yards per game in 2008 and 2009, respectively. No individual player reached the 100-yard rushing mark against the Crimson Tide in those two seasons; Anthony Dixon of Mississippi State came closest with 81 yards in 2009. Cody's presence improved Alabama's pass rush despite his not being an effective pass rusher himself. Wrote Michael Casagrande: "The power that comes with his size typically forces opposing lines to focus two players on blocking him, thus creating favorable rushing lanes for unblocked linebackers."

Prior to the 2010 BCS National Championship Game, Cody drew awestruck praise from Texas players and coaches. "They call him Mount Cody. Mount Cody is for a reason. He plays like he’s 450 pounds. He can move like he’s Sergio Kindle," said Longhorns guard Charlie Tanner. Alabama's defense held Texas to 81 yards rushing—more than 70 yards below their season average—on 28 attempts, and helped the Crimson Tide to their first national title since 1992.

Along with Crimson Tide teammates Javier Arenas, Mike Johnson, Leigh Tiffin, and Colin Peek, Cody participated in the 2010 Senior Bowl on January 30, 2010. In the Senior Bowl weigh-in at the Mobile Convention Center, Cody tipped the scales at 370 pounds, which hurt his draft status according to NFL Network draft analyst Mike Mayock.

Read more about this topic:  Terrence Cody, College Career, Alabama

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