Kevin Malloy is all football, waffles and Ed Sheeran
By Celia Balf
How much does it take to feed a 6’5”, 280-pound offensive lineman?
Kevin Malloy, a redshirt junior for the University at Albany football team, needs a lot to fuel his body throughout the day. Malloy’s favorite breakfast is a serving of five to six scrambled eggs with ham and cheese, six to eight waffles, 10 maple sausage links and two pieces of toast with a glass of orange juice. He is eating all this after downing a 20-ounce, 64-gram protein shake.
Malloy wakes up to an old-fashioned alarm clock that blasts on his bedside at 5:30 a.m. He pulls his body out of bed and heads to lift and go to meetings. By the time Malloy has lifted a combined weight of an entire women’s sports team, and studied the upcoming opponent for Saturday, most of us are still sound asleep.
The Long Island native and Third-Team All-CAA Offensive Line looks forward to the after-morning grind because it means he can head back to his house downtown and cook up that big breakfast before heading back to campus for classes and practice.
Malloy got switched to left tackle from tight end last year. Malloy stood at 250 pounds, which meant he had to put on about 30 pounds to fit the new position.
“From forcing myself to eat a lot more I’ve gained the 25 pounds. I was 285 pounds before the season but since we don’t lift as much as the off season I’ve lost a little,” he said. Despite Malloy’s small weight-loss in season, the coaching staff and he agree that 285 to 295 pounds is a good range for him to be of ultimate use without losing too much speed.
Malloy’s daily schedule puts a lot of emphasis on good diet habits. To play in the left tackle position size and strength is vital. A lot of students and student-athletes brush off certain meals knowing that they don’t need to worry about dropping a pound or two here, but for Malloy and the UAlbany football team, eating is a form of training for them.
Malloy drinks about two to four protein shakes a day, snacks on peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, and always has a protein-rich dinner. While eating is a part of Malloy’s schedule, training and going to school also fills up his day.
Every day is different for Malloy. Monday is the football team’s off-day, but he still uses the time to study film. Tuesdays he is up at 6:15 a.m. for meetings at 7 a.m., class at 8:45 a.m., then back home to eat, study and prepare for practice later that afternoon. By noon, Malloy is back on campus to get treatment before meetings at 2 p.m. and practice at 3 p.m. Practice goes until 5:15 p.m., and then treatment follows. Malloy said he’s usually in bed by 10 p.m. on weeknights because his days are so long.
Each weekday is packed with meetings, lifting, classes, studying, practicing, treatment and eventually sleeping. Malloy uses reading, music and family dinners with his teammates to re-focus after long days.
“I love Ed Sheeran, he’s amazing,” Malloy said.
Saturday is game day, so for Malloy his weeks are centered around preparing for that one day a week during which he can wear the number 67 proudly and represent the school. Malloy said he is a completely different person on and off the field, so for those of you who see a 6’5” guy in the process of growing out a mustache that looks like he might steal your lunch and your girl, don’t be alarmed. He’s actually a big teddy bear off the field.
“I think on the field I’m relentless and really physical. I like hitting people and putting them in the ground. It’s apart of the game of football and I love it. Honestly, off the field, I’m just a nice guy who happens to be a lot bigger than most,” he said.
A lot of Malloy’s strength and kindness is a reflection of how he was raised. “My mom is a preschool teacher at our local church. She’s the reason I’m so nice. All of my friends at home always call her a saint just because she’s so genuine,” Malloy said.
Malloy’s father was a paramedic in New York City before becoming a police officer. “Growing up he taught me to be strong and to really just go out and accomplish things. He is one of the main reasons I’m where I am today. He enjoys coming to my games more than anyone I know,” Malloy said.
Malloy’s kindness isn’t to undermine how hard what he does every day is and how seriously he takes his sport and education. “A lot of people don’t understand the challenge of playing Division 1 football, but it really is like a full time job,” he said.
His dream is to play professional football one day, but he understands how difficult it is going to be to get there. “Making it to the NFL is one of the hardest things to do so everyone has a backup plan. Mine has always been to become a police officer just like my father and his father before him. Just being able to help people is what I want to do,”