Derrick Nix, vegetarian?

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Derrick Nix has had weight issues in the past.

He reportedly weighed as much as 340 pounds in high school. His size was one of the reasons that he struggled to see the court as a freshman and a sophomore.

But Nix changed his body before last season. Remember this picture? Nix went from your run-of-the-mill dude with a pot belly to a muscle-bound, 270 pound athlete.

Nix hasn’t put any of that weight back on — Diamond Leung said that he was about 275 during a Michigan summer league while Gary Parrish said that the Michigan State staff told him that Nix was down to 268 as of Wednesday — but he still made a potentially life-altering decision on Monday.

From Nix’s twitter (via Leung): “As of yesterday day- Ive decided to change my life in a different way as of 9/20/12 I am a vegetarian and will remain this way until 9/20/13.” He also added that, in addition to doing it to honor his grandmother that passed, he’s doing it to stay in shape.

And, hopefully, drop a couple more pounds.

Going vegetarian isn’t easy. Anyone that’s tried to go on a diet (me!) and failed (me too!) can attest to that fact (and I only tried to limit portion size, not eliminate hamburgers and steak!!!). This is a good thing, though. Nix recognizes that weight issues can — and have — held back his athletic career. Regardless of whether or not this vegetarian thing sticks (I hope it does), it’s obvious that Nix is willing to sacrifice for the betterment of his body. That’s a good thing.

Best of luck to you, Derrick.

Rob Dauster is the editor of the college basketball website Ballin’ is a Habit. You can find him on twitter @robdauster.