Latin Berry, former cornerback for the Los Angeles Rams and Cleveland Browns, and two-sport All-American and Hall of Fame record holder at the University of Oregon, was in Canby last week to inspire the Canby Cougar football team.
Whether on the gridiron, in the weight room or on the track — where he set the school records that stood for decades, Berry was a feared competitor, who never backed down or admitted defeat.
There are many stories that could be shared in retelling the Legend of Latin Berry, who was a big part of the early days of Oregon Duck Football that set the fledgling program on the path to national prominence that it enjoys today.
One story, shared by Canby Football Coach Jimmy Joyce, was that he supposedly squat lifted 500 pounds on the same day he broke the state record in the triple jump, or so the legend goes. Latin later confirmed that the story is indeed true.
On Friday morning, he told the Cougs a little bit about where his intensity comes from.
After Latin’s talk, Coach Joyce told his team they were welcome to stay and work out or go home. There was no school Friday due to it being grading day.
Evidently inspired, every one of the players stayed to lift.
The Cougars are in their second year under Coach Joyce and his staff and finished last season on a two-game win streak. They’ll also be playing their first year at the 5A classification after a move that was offered by the OSAA.
A “way-too-early” 2020 preseason ranking for 5A football by The Oregonian a couple months ago placed Canby at No. 3 in the state.
For more photos, see the album on our Facebook page.
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