October 31, 2007

Wynn & Irvin happy in Athens

When Corvey Irvin and Jarius Wynn went through Mat Drills for the first time, they must have thought they were working out at a holiday spa.

Well, maybe not.

Still, considering what the two endured during their brief stints at Georgia Military College, Mat Drills didn't seem quite so bad.

Imagine, Irvin said, waking up at 4 a.m., bussing up to North Georgia in full combat fatigues - complete with boots and backpacks - and being told to march 15-20 miles up the Appalachian Trail.

"I never want to do that again, we hiked the trail maybe 15, 20 hours straight," laughed Irvin. "They told us we were going to do it, but I never figured it would be anything like that. I don't know how many footsteps I took. I had blisters all over my feet, I was sore, it was raining, and I was cold. But it made me a man."

Wynn, who was recently moved from defensive tackle to defensive end by Georgia coaches, agreed.

"It definitely makes you more of a man," Wynn said. "It was one of the hardest things I had to do."

Making matters worse, said Wynn, is that the early-morning march took place in winter.

Despite the hardship, Wynn joked that he still finished in front of Irvin.

"I finished ahead of him," Wynn said proudly. "I was around the front. Corvey was somewhere in the middle."

Irvin just shook his head when told what Wynn had said.

"Did he tell you it was straight uphill?" he said. "Yeah, he finished ahead of me, but I was tired. I finished though."

It also changed his life.

"It really did," Irvin said. "It let me know that I don't need to take anything in life for granted. It taught me to be a man, how to have good manners, a person of character, all that."

GMC also taught Irvin and Wynn how to be solid, contributing football players.

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