Tristan Wirfs Working on Transferring Weight Room Success to Field

April 15, 2019

Written by Rob Howe

IOWA CITY, Iowa – Tristan Wirfs went viral last month. His weight-lifting exploits grabbed national headlines.

Iowa’s offensive tackle hang-cleaned 450 pounds four times. He broke the program record of Brandon Scherff, who won the Outland Trophy and was the fifth overall pick in the 2015 NFL Draft.

Video of Wirfs’ lift was posted by the Hawkeyes on social media. It was picked up by media outlets around the country.

His teammates were shown celebrating his achievement. Fellow lineman Cole Banwart believed it helped team chemistry.

Here’s strength and conditioning coach Chris Doyle talking about the scene and achievement:

Head coach Kirk Ferentz tried tamping down some of the hype surrounding Wirfs, saying he hoped his junior could move defenders like he moved weights. Wirfs agreed.

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“That’s the next step,” he said. “I’ve got to take that moving weight in the weight room onto the field. That’s what I’ve been trying to do this spring ball, just finish guys more, really move guys off the line of scrimmage. I’m all for it.”

When Wirfs (6-5, 320) heard what his coach said, he didn’t connect it with playing meaner. It brought to mind technique and honing his skills.

“I hate when people say mean because I don’t feel like a mean person. But I’m trying to get pancakes. We’re striving to be dominant. I’m going to try my best to do that,” he said.

Wirfs and fellow tackle Alaric Jackson helped the Hawkeyes hold opponents to 16 sacks last season. That total ranked 14th nationally.

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Iowa’s run game wasn’t as reliable. It averaged 3.9 yards per carry and 148.4 per game, which ranked 94th in the country.

Wirfs is focusing on becoming a better run blocker. He’s making progress.

Watch what else Wirfs had to say about his weight lifting record and Polasek’s evaluation of his junior in this HN TV video:

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