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Like Mike: My challenge with OSU basketball coach Mike Boynton

Mike Boynton

Oklahoma State coach Mike Boyton holds his clipboard against his forehead and closes his eyes during the second half of OSU's 70-61 loss to Oklahoma on Wednesday in Gallagher-Iba Arena.

As the 1991 Teknoe song goes, "I wanna be like Mike."

The song refers to former Chicago Bulls star Michael Jordan, but in my thoughts, I'm referring to Oklahoma State basketball coach Mike Boynton.

In reality, I do not actually want to be like Mike Boynton. I'll never have the ability to play or coach basketball as he does. 

I got cut my freshman year of high school basketball and played backup power forward on my AAU team. To put it simply, I'm not good at basketball.

Instead, I would change the words to "I wanna follow like Mike."

As the hours count down to the start of February, coach Boynton is preparing himself to start dieting.

When I talked to Boynton last week, he explained to me that he's only going to consume fruit, nuts and legumes for his diet.

Coach Boynton has done this for many years. This year, however, he also stated that he is going to give up Twitter as well.

I thought that the combination of these three groups would be to do some type of cleanse, but I was wrong from what Boynton said.

"It was kinda one of these ridiculous challenges that kinda went too far to be honest," Boynton said.

Although he thinks the challenge went too far, he has continued year after year to complete it. 

Luckily for him, February is the shortest month of the year. 

As I talked to him more about the challenge, one little detail came out.

Nobody else he knows has completed it.

"A lot of people have asked over the course of the years if they could do it," Boynton said. "But I don't think I've had anyone succeed yet."

Insert myself, Joseph Fazio.

The last comment I gave to coach Boynton before leaving left a big grin across his face. 

I said, "Well, we have 28 days then."

In hind sight, that was probably the dumbest comment I could ever give. 

But I manned up and will go side-by-side with Boynton for the month of February with this diet.

Why would I ever limit my food consumption to just fruits, nuts and legumes?

I have no idea.

If I want to make myself feel better, I'll just say it's for the content. 

I wanted to just silently do the challenge for a month and report what I did on March 1st. My editors and adviser, however, want to make this into a docu-series throughout the month.

There will be regular updates about what I am eating and my progress through hopeful weight loss that I know I need.

Either myself or social media editor Adam Luther will film my progress. 

Halfway through the challenge, I will interview coach Boynton again asking how he's doing overall with the challenge.

Hopefully, I will still be doing the challenge and not have thrown in the towel.

My good friend and photo editor, Theodore Chase Brewster, believes I will not even last a week. I told him to do it with me, but he declined my offer.

After many attempts of calling him chicken, he bet me $20 I would not last seven days. 

I gladly accepted the challenge and cannot wait to get the Venmo notification at 12:01 a.m. Feb. 8.

If anyone would like to do prop bets for the challenge with your friends similar to how my friends are, I will put the money line at -140 that I will complete it and +125 that I will not.

No matter how self-deprecating this is, I know it will be a great challenge, but it comes with a great reward of losing weight.

If coach Boynton is reading this, I wish you luck in your journey of health.

And for everybody else, pray for me.