Balancing the scales of gender equality one pound of flesh at a time….
For today’s DCOM, we’re kickin’ it old school with Herschel Walker. There’s been a lot of buzz about Ezekiel Elliott’s appearance on the cover of ESPN the Magazine’s Body Issue, but let’s not forget the shoulders of Cowboys running back greats on which Elliott’s six-pack abs are perched upon. And as opposed to these millennials like Elliott with their over-specialization, prodigious development, and (probably) unnatural cravings for avocado toast, Walker is a true renaissance man who didn’t enter the NFL until the ripe-old age of 24.
Of course, Walker was a breakout star from the moment he stepped foot on the Georgia campus, leading the Bulldogs to an undefeated season in 1980 and winning the Heisman trophy in 1982. Here he is on the Sports Illustrated cover from that year.
What’s even more impressive is Walker built his impressive frame through a workout regime consisting entirely of sit-ups and push-ups, as he explains in the below video. Try that Zeke!
And like Elliott, Walker moonlighted in the spring for Georgia’s track and field team running the 60-yard dash. He even cracked the Top 5 at one point.
Walker eventually was off to the pros in 1983, but (in)famously to the USFL! Of course, the Cowboys, always the savvy draft maneuverers, suspected Hershel was eventually bound for the NFL and drafted him in the fifth round in 1985. Walker didn’t disappoint, becoming the NFL’s top all-purpose back by 1988. But let’s face it, sometimes you gotta let go of your prime cut when you can get a slab of ribs in return, and that’s just what the Cowboys did in 1989, shipping Walker to the Vikings for five players and six future drafts picks, a historically one-sided trade that eventually led to Cowboys’ acquisition Emmitt Smith, Russell Maryland, Kevin Smith, and Darren Woodson, setting the table for their dynasty. Now that’s what I call return on your investment!
Walker with his new threads, back when running backs were considered valuable.
Walker retired from the NFL in 1997, but that didn’t stop him from grinding. Rather, he pivoted to a solid MMA career and upped his calisthenics game to 1,500 push-ups and 3,500 sit-ups a day! It certainly shows.
But there’s brains to go with that brawn, as Walker showed during his stint on Celebrity Apprentice, battling the likes of Andrew Dice Clay, Joan Rivers, and future diplomat Dennis Rodman. If Rodman can do it, there’s gotta be an international assignment somewhere out there for Walker. There’s no telling the depth of political divides that a little calisthenics can’t bridge.