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Minnesota coach Richard Pitino credits new NCAA policy, Shabazz Napier, for freshman’s weight gain

Jul 28, 2014, 11:30 PM EDT

Much was made of Shabazz Napier’s remarks about the lack of food available to NCAA student-athletes during the NCAA Tournament this past March, but the NCAA changed the rule to allow for more food and snacks in April.

Minnesota head coach Richard Pitino credited the change in the NCAA rules, as well as Napier, for incoming freshman Carlos Morris putting on 17 pounds since he arrived on campus this summer.

With the new NCAA legislation in place, it should be easier for student-athletes to have a proper diet to go along with weight training to increase muscle mass in a shorter amount of time.

From Marcus R. Fuller of the Pioneer Press:

When Gophers basketball coach Richard Pitino told reporters last week that scrawny freshman Carlos Morris gained 17 pounds since joining the team this summer, he credited the NCAA’s new policy.

“He came in, he might have been 160 pounds,” Pitino said. “Now that he gets in this environment, and he’s eating several times a day, thanks to Shabazz Napier, he’ll eat like 20 times a day. So we just keep feeding him. That’s the way it’s going to be.”

Besides coaches feeling good that their players aren’t going to bed hungry, could we see more development in the weight room for certain players and programs? It will probably help with certain athletes and hurt others who eat too much and add unnecessary weight.

The pros and cons of muscle development wasn’t often cited when the new legislation was put in place by the NCAA, but it could help some freshmen immediately gain strength and acclimate more quickly into college basketball.