LARRY LAGE,AP Sports Writer
BLOOMFIELD TOWNSHIP, Mich. (AP) — Ndamukong Suh and Tony Scheffler have been Detroit Lions teammates the past two seasons.
Now, they’re also business partners.
Suh and Scheffler are investors in the 2,500-square foot training facility that opened this week within Bloomfield Tennis and Fitness. They slipped in a second workout on Tuesday to promote D1 Detroit after training earlier in the day at Lions headquarters in Allen Park.
Entering his third season with the Lions, Suh said it is important for him to work on establishing roots off in the Motor City.
“I look to be here for a very, very long time,” said Suh, who is from Portland, Ore. “I look to win many championships here. I want make it known that I look to be here in Detroit, whether it is down in the city or up here.”
The facility in suburban Detroit is the 14th opened by D1 founder Will Bartholomew, who played fullback at Tennessee from 1998-2001.
D1 has partnered with stars such as Peyton Manning and Tim Tebow, along with physicians, to open facilities that work out and provide physical therapy to people of all abilities 7 or older to train as if they’re preparing to be Division-I athletes.
Bartholomew opened the first D1 facility in Nashville with Manning, a former teammate, in 2001 and plans to open three more this summer and two or three by the end of the year.
“In every city, we partner with at least one celebrity athlete and a medical partner,” he said. “We try to pick guys who are all about fitness and training and I couldn’t have picked two better guys than Ndamukong and Tony to help us get started here in Detroit.”
Scheffler, who is from Chelsea and lives near his hometown, said he has always wanted to get involved in a local business and was glad D1 Detroit has given him the right opportunity.
“You could have a 65-year-old woman and an 8-year-old boy battling and going at it in this beautiful facility,” he said. It’s great to be back in Michigan and to be able to do something like this it’s a dream come true.”
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