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Football Welcomes Legendary Strength Coach to Campus


Ball State’s football program welcomed Johnny Parker, an expert in strength and conditioning to campus, to visit with coaches, strength coaches and staff.

“We greatly enjoy having visitors like Coach Parker spend time around our program,” Ball State head football coach Pete Lembo said.  “It is important for us to keep learning and evaluating what we do and how we do it.  Coach Parker has been a great resource for David Feeley through the years.  It is always special to have a mentor around to provide meaningful feedback.”

Parker competed in football and track at Shaw High School in South Carolina, before graduating from Mississippi in 1968.  He served as the linebackers coach at Indianola Academy before being hired by South Carolina in 1974.  Parker spent three seasons on the South Carolina football staff before becoming the first strength and conditioning coach in the Big 10 Conference when hired by Indiana in 1977.  He went on to be the strength and conditioning coach at Louisiana State and Mississippi before entering the National Football League.

"Having such an accomplished person like Coach Johnny Parker here to provide our strength staff with feedback in what we do in the weight room and how we do it is priceless," Ball State football strength and conditioning coordinator David Feeley said.  "Without question he made our strength staff better, which will have a positive ripple effect on enhancing the way we develop our players."

Parker went to the New York Giants in 1984 and worked there for nine years, including for the 1986 and 1990 Super Bowl Championship teams.  In 1993, Parker moved on to the New England Patriots where he spent seven seasons.  He moved on to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and helped them to the 2003 Super Bowl Championship.  In 2005, Parker was hired by the San Francisco 49ers before retiring after a 34-year career.

Parker, who went to Russia to study under gold-medal winning Olympic weightlifting coaches in the 1980s, was honored in 1994 by the Professional Football Strength and Conditioning Coaches Society with the Super Bowl Achievement Award.

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