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Gold and Black Illustrated, Vol 26, Digital 6

Gold and Black is a multi-platform media company that covers Purdue athletics like no one else.

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GOLD AND BLACK ILLUSTRATED VOLUME 26, ISSUE 6 77 Lorenzo Neal, DT Gold and Black: Do you know what number you're going to wear? Neal: "(No.) 9." Gold and Black: Explain the significance of that. Neal: "Growing up, my dad played football and he blocked for (LaDainian Tomlinson) and he was with Drew Brees for a long time. Drew Brees has known me since I was 5 or 6. He was actually a big part of me going to Purdue because I had always heard he'd went to Purdue. We talked about it initially when I got the offer and we talked about it a couple more times. He also had an open line of communication with the coaches, so he had known about me. We talked a couple times over it. Seeing how his experience was made me just really want to have the same experience as him. That was his number with the Saints. I was born in New Orleans, so the Saints are my favorite team. So that's why I picked No. 9." Navon Mosley, S Gold and Black: What do you think the adjustment to Purdue will be like, from a football perspective, or being away from home, or academics? Mosley: "I don't know exactly what to expect. I think the getting-up part, early in the morning, I think I'll be OK with, but the whole … I guess the biggest thing I'll have to adjust to is that when you came into high school, you're the most athletic guy, came in the star. I think I'll have to be a listener now, instead of the leader, so that will be the biggest thing I'll have to adjust to. Just learning more rather than being the guy right away." Jackson Anthrop Alex Criddle Grant Hermanns Terrance Landers Brian Lankford-Johnson Austin Larkin Navon Mosley Jalen Neal Lorenzo Neal Jackson Anthrop, WR Gold and Black: What excites you most about coming to college? Anthrop: "My favorite part is that I'll still be in my hometown. I'm not going thousands of miles away to go play for a school. I get to represent where I came from, so that gives you a chip on your shoulder. "… There's really no bad to it. Some kids get homesick and they want to leave or it takes their mind off playing the game. But knowing I'll have the family right in the backyard, I can go home whenever I want and just be able to play in front of everybody and especially represent not only (Central Catho- lic) but all the local schools as well, I think that's what I'll be looking forward to the most." Freshman Orientation Jalen Neal, OL Gold and Black: Do you feel like there's a lot of room to improve because you have only a cou- ple years at the position? Neal: "Yeah, there's always room for improvement, but as far as the concepts and knowing how things work as an offensive lineman, I definitely think I have it in hand. I'm really quick at learning and quick adapting as well, I want to say my hardest thing is adjusting to the Purdue offense. It shouldn't be that hard, but it's new techniques; I've learned one thing for two years and now I'll learn another thing, just that little transition. But I'm pretty confident playing offensive line. I do agree, though, that I need more improvement every now and then." Gold and Black: Especially because you didn't get this last spring at Purdue for extra practices and have only two years, you've got to learn as quickly as possible. Neal: "Absolutely. After we finish workouts and study hall, I'll still be working on what I need to work on to make sure that when fall camp comes around or the season comes around, that I'm fully comfortable in the whole program. I don't want to go out there and see those things come around and I'm still trying to figure out what's going on, asking too many questions. I want to be able to go out there, have them ask me questions and know the answers with full confidence." Grant Hermanns, OL Gold and Black: Trying to get big- ger has kind of been a lifelong project for you, right? Hermanns: "Yeah, definitely. It's been a long time. I've been trying to gain weight and gain it slowly and progressively. I started out my freshman year of high school at 138 pounds. So I've just been getting bigger and taller and stronger and it's been a long process, but you just have to stay in it." Gold and Black: Where are you weight-wise right now? Hermanns: "I'm about 265." Gold and Black: How'd you do it? I read peanut butter and jelly sandwiches played a role. Hermanns: "When I was younger, my brother — I have a twin — he brought home a rumor saying that if you drink three glasses of milk every night and eat a bunch of PB&Js, you'd be bigger and taller, so that's what I did. I'd make a whole loaf of PB&Js and pack that away and eat those throughout the day. People at school looked at me weird because I'm walking around with a loaf of bread. Whatever I have to do to get better, it doesn't matter to me."

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