August 16, 2006

Boone, Bollman overcome offseason problems

The 2006 offseason was a time for most Buckeye fans to savor the possibility that the upcoming edition of the Ohio State football team could be primed for a national championship. But, inside the program, it was a trying time for two members of the Buckeye football family.

In May, offensive coordinator and line coach Jim Bollman underwent heart bypass surgery to unclog three arteries. One of his pupils, offensive tackle Alex Boone, was driving while inebriated the night of April 2 in the off-campus area and struck a parked vehicle. Boone pled no contest to drunken driving, paid a $300 fine and had his driver's license suspended for 180 days. Since then, he admitted he had an alcohol problem and has committed himself to sobriety.

With the 2006 season about to dawn, both men made sacrifices to put their offseason struggles behind them.

For Bollman, that meant cutting red meat out of his diet and replacing it with fish, turkey and chicken. It also meant that he was going to be placed on an exercise program that he will continue through the season. He is quick to admit that he wasn't surprised when his health problems surfaced three months ago.

"Oh, I wasn't in good shape before, no no no," Bollman said. "I had probably done my best job exercising last year during the season, and then when we moved out of the Woody Hayes across the street to the Fawcett Center (for the WHAC's renovation), I had not done a good job."

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