COLLINGWOOD's American recruit Mason Cox is using Fremantle ruckman Aaron Sandilands as his development template in his first AFL pre-season.

The 211cm Cox has already added six kilograms to his light frame since joining the Magpies and has been undergoing intensive skills development with specialist coaches Craig McRae and Anthony Rocca.

The Magpies have identified Sandilands, who is less than a centimetre taller than Cox, as the ideal player for the 24-year-old American to model his game on.

Rocca told it was a big ask but Cox was showing good early signs.

"He’s no Aaron Sandilands at the moment but he’s someone that we’re going to model on, as Sandilands is such a good player and a dominant ruckman," Rocca said.

"When he goes forward he’s pretty dominant as well, so he’s someone we’re going to have a look at.

"We’ll watch his vision and see things that he does as well, and what we can implement with Mason."

Collingwood won a bidding war between AFL clubs for the American's services after he impressed at the AFL's US International Combine in Los Angeles.

"He’s kicking the ball OK – there’s a lot more to work on, but he’s picked up everything very quickly," Rocca said.

"His marking and his timing of jumping and body contesting is very good, and only will get better."

The Magpies have added several talented young talls to its list in the last three years, recruiting Brodie Grundy at the 2012 NAB AFL Draft and using its No.9 pick in this year's draft on father-son recruit Darcy Moore.

It also has 22-year-old ruckman Jarrod Witts, who joined the club via a NSW scholarship program.

The Magpies have picks 5, 30 and 48 in this year's NAB AFL Draft.