When defenses line up this year against the Whitworth Pirates, they have to try to run around or through a pair of brothers who simply are huge.
Dalton and Kyle Cosby, of Spokane Valley, weigh more than 600 pounds combined on the hoof in their size-16 shoes.
“They are very big,” Pirates coach John Tully said, putting pauses between his words to accentuate their meaning. “And, they are very strong.”
Dalton, a senior, stands 6-foot-8 and weighs 315 pounds. His “little” brother, Kyle, a sophomore, looks every bit as tall. But he measured in at 6-foot-6, 287-pounds with a 40-inch waist.
Both Pirates have such big frames that they don’t look huge from a distance. But walk right up to the behemoths and they are other-worldly big.
“I remember one time we came out of an elevator at Riverpark Square and people were staring at us,” their mother, Sandy Cosby, said.
She stands a mere 5-foot-10, but father Dan Cosby stands 6-foot-5 and weighs about 340 pounds. “You could see their faces go, ‘Oh, my goodness. Look at the big, nice giants,’ ” Sandy Cosby said.
The mother is happy to pay whatever it costs to have Whitworth feed her two youngest boys. An older son, Dylan, is disabled and lives at home but attends Eastern Washington University.
Dalton and Kyle “eat everything and anything. We spend a lot of trips going to Costco,” she said. “I like to cook, so that worked out.”
Dalton, a 21-year-old left tackle, played but didn’t start for the Pirates in 2010 and 2011. He came to Whitworth rather large, standing 6-foot-6, 278-pounds out of University High in Spokane Valley where both brothers wrestled as heavyweights.
But in the three years since, Dalton has grown two inches and gained 37 pounds.
Kyle, 19, who plays guard, was even smaller. He wrestled his senior season at 225 pounds. He gained some weight before joining Whitworth as a 6-foot-5, 247-pound freshman last year. Then in the offseason, he put on a whopping 40 pounds.
And most of that came out of Sandy Cosby’s pantry.
Breakfast: a box of cereal – an entire box of cereal, each.
Lunch: five or six chicken breasts or an entire large pizza, each.
“One time during wrestling season, Kyle had 14 turkey sandwiches in one day after Thanksgiving,” she said. “That was a lot, I thought.”
The appetites virtually eliminate the family from going to restaurants, unless they are buffets, she noted.
“It’s tough finding a place that will fill them up,” she said. “Like Subway, even a foot-long doesn’t fill them up. You have to buy several foot-longs.”
Dalton, an accounting major, relayed a story about attending a dinner hosted by the parents of his girlfriend, Margaret Claassen.
“They knew I liked to eat so they prepared a lot of food. I just cleaned house. I ran a train on their dinner,” he said smiling. “Margaret was just laughing.”
Kyle said he remembers walking into Whitworth’s dining hall, which is a buffet. “All you can eat? Oh, yeah?”
Asked how he gained 40 pounds in the offseason, Kyle answered: “A lot of mom’s food, red meat and potatoes and a lot of lifting.”
Both brothers worked out together in the offseason, something that Tully and other coaches noticed.
“They are big guys and have gotten bigger, but their work ethic is outstanding,” Tully said. “You can’t always project a young person’s work ethic. But when you couple their size and their work ethic, you have a special group. I’m really glad they are on our side.”
On the field, Dalton’s frame makes him look like a transformer. His shoulders are so wide he looks to be about four-feet across when he puts his hands on his hips.
During training camp, a 230-pound defensive end ran a drill against Dalton, who kept the defender at bay with his long arms before he engulfed him and plowed him into the earth. The defender walked over to his teammates and said, “When Dalton gets those big mitts on you, it’s over.”
While Kyle started at right guard in the Pirates opening 36-7 win over St. Scholastica, coaches have been inserting new packages and have the Cosby brothers lining up next to each other.
“It’s just exciting to play with my brother,” Kyle Cosby said. “It’s just the best.”
Kyle is majoring in chemistry and hopes to eventually become a dentist, “a very imposing dentist,” Sandy Cosby said.
“They are great kids. They are wonderful,” she said. “I am very proud of them.”