High School Sports

Lewisville center sweats the small stuff, and the big stuff, and everything else

RICHBURG -- John Jordan, starting center for the Lewisville Lions, doesn't have the stamina to play on both sides of the ball like most of his teammates.

He said most people might not understand why -- that he's afflicted with a condition that zaps his strength as the game wears on.

Jordan has overactive sweat glands. He treats the problem by drinking as much water as possible and taking daily supplements to help him maintain his strength.

Coach Floyd Drum said Jordan is one of the team's top players and will be the center like he has for three years when Lewisville hosts Fort Mill tonight.

Jordan is in the top five of his senior class -- he wants to go to college and major in chemistry -- and calls the blocking schemes when Lewisville's on offense.

Drum said most players sweat and it drips off the body. When Jordan sweats, he said, it's like a water faucet continuously running at a low rate.

"When he walks to the ball from the huddle, you can see sweat pouring off him from the sideline,'' Drum said. "It's so bad that he has to continuously wipe his hands and arms on the sides of his uniform before snapping the ball.

"We have to watch him closely because he's tough, won't take himself out of a game. But we can tell when he's getting tired or overheated. His eyes start to roll back. When we see that, we keep him on the sideline with us.''

Everybody sweats, but Jordan didn't realize how bad he had it until he passed out one day at practice before his sophomore season. Lewisville's coaches piled ice bags on Jordan and took him home as soon as they felt comfortable he could get up and walk.

Jordan said that night, his father -- John Sr. -- called up the Internet and started checking around to see what could be done that would allow his son to stay hydrated and strong.

Besides drinking a lot of water, they discovered some over-the-counter supplements he could take. Each day, Jordan downs flax oil, Vitamin B150, Vitamin 12, potassium and zinc.

Jordan constantly drinks water and said he rarely walks past a water cooler without bending over and taking a few gulps.

He weighs 193 pounds and loses around six pounds from Friday's game to the end of Monday's practice. But he puts it back on before the next game.

And he's seen his share of drawbacks.

"I had to quit drinking sweet tea, my favorite drink,'' Jordan said. "And it's tough when I go to dances and to the prom. I'll meet girls and when they touch me, I'll be soaking wet.

"I can go outside right now and within a minute, I'll be soaked. It's something I have to live with. Sure, I like to play on both sides of the football, but I'll take what I can get."

Jordan said he's never seen a doctor about the condition but has talked to several away from their offices. He said they told him to keep doing what he's doing, to be sure to drink plenty of fluids.

Jordan said it's kind of funny when he thinks about it. Because he stays in condition and drinks lots of water, other players get cramps and he doesn't.

The others don't sweat like Jordan, however, and are not as aware of how important it is to drink plenty of water.

Drum said Jordan is one of the hardest-working Lions in the weight room. But that too has its drawbacks.

"He sweats so bad when he's on a machine, that I have to spray and wipe down the equipment when he's finished,'' Drum said. "I kid him about it and he takes it really well.

"He came in my office the other day and sat down after practice. He got up and my coach was soaking wet. I told him not to ever come in there and sit down again and he just grinned at me.''