The last time the U.S. Men’s Weightlifting team won an Olympic medal was in 1984. Their last gold medal? Fifty-six years ago.
This summer in Rio, their hopes ride high all because of 15-year-old lifting prodigy C.J. Cummings.
At 5’4″ and 150 pounds, the sophomore from Beaufort, S.C. looks more like a spectator than a competitor. Don’t let his size fool you, however. Cummings set an American record last summer when he hoisted 385 pounds in the clean and jerk. No other person in his weight class, adult or youth, had ever lifted that weight before.
“In 37 years of coaching, I’ve never seen anything like this kid. He’s the Michael Jordan of weightlifting in America.” – Dennis Snethen, coach of the U.S. team at the Bejing Olympics (Wall Street Journal)
Experts believe that Cummings is still 10 years away from reaching his potential and full development.
He trains 1-2 hours a day, which has him beating lifters who are in their 20’s at national competitions.
Take a look at this feature CBS did on him:
He will be a fun one to watch for many, many years ahead.