Q&A With Zach Oliver
A quarterback on the NU football team talks Southern food, his love of cooking and team hangouts.
How does your diet during football and off-season differ?
In off-season I’m a lot more focused on leaning out. I try to cut the carbohydrates more because when we’re working out every day it’s easier to build muscle if I don’t have as many carbs. Personally I’ll stop eating carbohydrates after 5 p.m. But as far as in-season, because we’re practicing every day it’s a little bit different. I don’t monitor as much because it’s a longer day of football. Plus, I need the energy to be able to wake up, eat a little bit, practice, go to meetings, go to class all day.
What do you usually eat before practice?
Our practices are in the morning so that we can get them in before classes. Usually I’ll have some type of grain bar — so like a Nutri-Grain bar or Nature Valley — and a cup of my own concoction that I do. It’s half water and then I fill it up with cranberry and orange juice. And then I have my cup of coffee.
Where do you like to go to eat during your free time?
I really like Bat 17. I go there fairly often and get the “Takin’ Care of Business.” It’s a steak sandwich with chipotle sauce, cheddar, barbecue sauce and fried onions.
Do you cook often?
If I have the option to make food, I’m going to cook. Cause I grew up cooking. My mom and both my grandmothers are awesome cooks so I grew up eating a lot of Southern comfort food, like chicken and dumplings, gumbo, crawfish étouffée, so I kind of picked up on all that. So when I can I try to but it’s hard to get some of those Southern dishes up here.
Do you have any funny food memories with the team?
Every Thursday, each position group goes to a different restaurant. I’m a quarterback so me, the quarterbacks
and the offensive line go out to eat. Today we went to Herb’s Palace, and when you mix us and them it makes for a pretty interesting group of guys. The offensive line are like 6 foot 6, 300 pounds and it’s like 20 of them. Walking into a restaurant you just look at the faces of the people. Like the hostess, her eyes get really big. That’s probably one of my favorite parts of the week, just going to the restaurant with the guys on the team and just having some camaraderie.
What’s your favorite place to eat with the football team?
We do a hibachi at Todoroki. We actually set the record
at Todoroki. It was like me and five other guys and we ended up eating like 54 pieces a person. That’s like 300
something pieces of sushi. It was a lot. It was a lot of sushi.
HEIGHT: 6’4” WEIGHT: 235
MAJOR: Communications, BIP minor
HOMETOWN: Baton Rouge, LA