Resilient: adjective, 1. Able to recoil or spring back into shape after bending, stretching, or being compressed 2. Able to withstand or recover quickly from difficult conditions.
The above two definitions of the word resilient, resonate with me after watching this 2012 University of Montana Grizzly football team. This team has been knocked down, beaten, stripped and thrown out in streets of ridicule because of a few bad judgement calls by young men. But, as many of us find a scapegoat to point the finger at, I offer the following view-point to consider and hopefully embrace.
My first post was before the season and I truly wanted to post throughout the year but, I have refrained from posting because I didn’t want to spew my feelings after most games. Yet even though I left many a game with anger and angst running throughout my body, I woke up every Sunday with a feeling of peace. I knew deep down inside of me, that the expectations that we normally hold our beloved Griz to were farfetched and unfair. With that statement I am in no way accepting losing, but, rather being okay with it.
We are all familiar with the events that have affected this team and if you really look at the situation from an unbiased viewpoint, the cards were obviously stacked against us from the get go. But, through this process, we have seen some young stars shine and more importantly, seen the pride that young men have for this program.
This trying time in the Griz era has let youth take over, which helps ease the pain of this year. There is light ahead and the potential for this team is very high. We are young at all skill positions (Counts and Henderson will be cornerstones of this offense). Our linebacking core keeps getting younger and better. Our DB’s will be 3 and 4 year starters by the time they are seniors and probably most importantly, our defensive line is going to be the focal point. This defensive line will lead us back to greatness in my opinion. Look at every great Grizzly football team and the one thing they have in common is immaculate D-line play. More importantly they have had ends who are not afraid to put the team on their backs, a la Petek, Bush, Beirmann and Pitcher.
So as we go down the path of battle as wounded brothers, realize that We Are Montana. We may be knocked down, but, in the end we always prevail. Greatness comes at the cost of great defeat and from here on out, we will reclaim the Big Sky and strike fear back into every FCS school that steps on to the field against the silver and maroon.