June 2, 2020

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Diamond in the Rough – Wyatt Coffey

Wyatt Coffey is a 2021 linebacker that plays for Archbishop Hannan in Covington, La. The junior explains to me that despite having over 80 tackles last season that playing the linebacker spot was not his primary position, and that he stepped up to fill a need for his team. He hopes to rejoin the running back room next season and be a two way starter on both offense and defense. Coffey has displayed immense strength in the weight room, posting impressive numbers including a 525lb Squat, 335lb Clean, and a 475lb Front Squat.

As impressive as these numbers are, even more impressive is the fact that Wyatt has done all this without the use of a right pectoral muscle. The 5’11 190lb junior was born with a rare genetic disorder known as Poland’s Anomaly which affects between one in 10,000 to one in 100,000 births. Coffey tells me that he uses his disorder as motivation on and off the field, and that he is blessed because in some cases children can be born without fingers or even right limbs. In the classroom the junior currently has a 3.9 GPA and 28 ACT.

When did you start playing football?

I started playing in third grade at Pelican Park, my dad was my coach. I played quarterback, my dad has kind of everything I know. He taught me my passion for the game, my football IQ, he’s been there every step of the way from little league to preparing for college.

What do you love about football?

 I love to hit people, that’s one of my favorite things to do. I like the tactics of the game. Just setting up routes and coverages and seeing what works on what. I love just as much the physical as much the mental part of the game. It’s all super important to me.

Did you play any other sports growing up?

I treat weightlifting as a sport, just because it helps out your football quite a bit. I wrestled and run track since seventh grade. Track for speed and wrestling for conditioning.

What motivates you the most?

My dad helps me a lot. I like to chase his numbers as far as weightlifting goes. He played football at Navy too so I chase his tackles. He is always there for me when I need a push to keep going or get better. Whenever I settle for something, he makes sure I am not at the top yet, so he has been my biggest motivator for me.

Speaking of chasing, your dad sent me a video of you power cleaning the other day, and it ties the record high school record of now NFL running back.

So my dad went to Catholic High School and Derrius Guice is on the board right underneath my dad for power clean, and I’ve been chasing his power clean for some time now and I just tied it at 335 last week. So, I am pretty excited about that. But, yeah Derrius Guice is a big motivator for me. I see myself as pretty equivalent in the weight room, so I am trying get to where he is now.

Going back to this previous season, what were your goals?

I wanted to play a little running back, but that didn’t work out this year, I am expecting it to work out this year.

What would you say is a strength in your game play?

I like to study film quite a bit, and so I kind of notice plays before they develop. So, I get there a lot faster before the normal linebacker would. Which is kind of helpful with speed, I also like to hit people, I get there before everyone else so I can hit him hard. I guess football IQ is another strength that only shows up on film.

Who would say you model your game after?

Chaisson from LSU, as far as defense. He can rush off the edge, but sometimes drop back. As far as offense goes probably Saquan (Barkley) and Derrius Guice

At the end of this year, what you want your coaches and teammates to say about you?

I really would want them to see me as a guy that leads by example and not by words only. I’m not only going to tell people to do something but I’m going to do it myself. I want my coaches to see me as a gateway to help them be a voice for player to player contact. Overall be a leader for the team and be someone that the guys can go to.

If you weren’t playing football, what sport do you think you would be playing?

Probably Olympic weightlifting. That’s the next thing I would go to, my dad was also an Olympic weightlifter, that’s also another passion I do have.

On a scale of 1 to 10 what would be your ideal performance number?

I think about an eight and a half. Because at that point I feel I’m still very passionate and level headed but I’m not too over the top and too excited to where I can’t see everything that’s happening around me.