Jan. 10, 2008
IOWA CITY — Jean-Claude Moreau made the most of an injury-prone athletic career.
The Canadian native, who goes by J.C., was a scholarship football player at Colgate University in Hamilton, N.Y. A neck injury suffered during his junior season exposed Moreau to the benefits of weight training. That new-found interest helped guide him to his first job as head strength and conditioning coach at Lafayette College in Easton, Pa.
Seven years later, Moreau was named head strength and conditioning coach at the University of Iowa for men’s basketball, women’s basketball and the Olympic sports. Prior to becoming a Hawkeye on Nov. 12, he had stops at the University of Memphis and the University of Arkansas.
“I love Coach Lickliter and Coach Bluder,” Moreau said. “They do things the right way and they believe in discipline and toughness. I came to the University of Iowa because I was impressed by (director of athletics) Gary Barta and his vision. I want to be a part of the growth and the future of Iowa athletics. I’m pretty excited.”
Moreau graduated from Gloucester High School in Ottawa, Ontario, where he participated in football and track before attending Colgate. He received a bachelor’s degree in history and education from Colgate in 2001. He started at Lafayette in December, 2000, and worked there until being named assistant strength and conditioning coach at Memphis in August, 2002. In July, 2004, Moreau accepted a position at Arkansas where he managed the strength and conditioning of all women’s athletics programs and worked with incoming freshman football players in the summer.
“My job at Iowa is a bigger position with more responsibility,” Moreau said. “I’m still getting acclimated to everything here. The people have been friendly and supportive. The adjustment has been easy because everyone is so welcoming.”
“At Iowa, we want to have the hardest-working and best-conditioned athletes as there can be. We need to get into the habit of working hard and we need to be relentless.”
During his career, Moreau has worked with star running backs DeAngelo Williams (Memphis) and Felix Jones (Arkansas). But he derives more pleasure from the accomplishments of Arkansas women’s golfer Stacy Lewis.
“Athletes like Williams and Jones have so much God-given talent,” Moreau said. “Stacy Lewis has a rod in her back and came to Arkansas as a frail, stiff golfer. She made so much progress in the weight room.”
Lewis was medalist at the 2007 NCAA Division I golf championship, firing a clutch 66 over the final 18 holes.
“She had a mental resiliency and toughness,” Moreau said. “By no means do I try to take credit for what an athlete accomplishes, but maybe I was a small part of the puzzle that helped her become successful.”
Moreau, who earned a master’s degree in human movement science and education from Memphis in 2007, is a testament to the resiliency he preaches. In 2005 as he returned to Arkansas from the NCAA volleyball championship in Missouri, the car Moreau was a passenger in overturned, seriously injuring his right arm and hand. He used a sweater as a tourniquet, which saved his life, but nerve damage has restricted motion and use of his right hand.
Although strength and conditioning coaches never have won-loss records attached to their personal biographies, they are still vital in the success of the athletes they instruct. Strength and conditioning practice plans vary by sport. For women’s basketball, Moreau assists the team with warm-up exercises and he is in charge of conditioning when Coach Bluder requests. During the season the Hawkeyes go through a weight workout two or three times a week. Moreau’s strength and conditioning division also includes Bill Maxwell and Damon Davis. Another assistant will be hired in the future.
“At Iowa, we want to have the hardest-working and best-conditioned athletes as there can be,” Moreau said. “We need to get into the habit of working hard and we need to be relentless.”
Click HERE for the Big Ten Network home page.