Wide Right: Gut Check
by Jeff Cockey, 10/27/03
In that case, I would like to say one thing folks - gut check time, Hokies.
The winds and the white caps are kickiní up. The women and children have been evacuated and the house has been boarded up. This is the moment of choice for us. It will be "ugly, pug ugly, fugly, pug fugly, maybe even ugly ugly" (Moe the bartender). It will be painful - like being forced to read Matt Hayesí columns for the rest of your life (I know I used that one before, but when looking for a definition for painful, you wonít find a better one). And it will require us to reach down deep into our hearts to a place we havenít visited in three years. Now is the time to pull out our Hokie pride, wear it on our sleeves, and play with more heart than we ever have. Sure, we could offer excuses for the debacle that occurred in Morgantown:
But we wonít - because it was our fault. We are all responsible, and it is time to move on. We have a fight coming:
We know what it takes to lose a game, and not a single one of us ever wants to feel that way again. Itís time to pick up the pieces. We are down but not out of this thing. We have to make this season fun again, and for that we need a heavy dose of Clark Wilhelm Griswold Jr. passion.
We need a dose of what he was on - no need to threaten Laskey, the guard at Walleyworld, with a "Magnum P.I." but it would be nice to have that kind of fire and drive. Nobody expects us to win this next game, but like Cameron, we need to step up.
We are back in the underdog position . . . Back in our comfort zone . . . Back where we are the most dangerous. Are we going to let one another down?
We know who we are. We know what we are made of. We know what we can do, and now is the time to show the world.
We have a long road ahead of us.
And it begins with this one game. I donít care who they think they are, how good people say they are . . . They can lose a game just as easily as we did. All that Hokie Nation has is itself. And thatís just the way we like it. ESPN's Mark May has made it abundantly clear that we donít have the pride, the might, the talent, or the guts to win our next game. Letís feed his words to him this Saturday. Letís make him turn to Trev Alberts and say:
We have a chance to turn this around and be the surprise team this week. No one believes that we can beat the mighty Miami. Itís good to be the underdog.
We know our enemy well. We have beaten them before and we will beat them again.
Thereís a Hurricane blowing into Blacksburg and itís about time we stand our ground and shut them down. As a Hokie I pose this challenge to you the fan and to you the Hokie football player. I may have made fun of this in past columns but it has never read more true than it does now Ė "Will you protect this house?"
We have been embarrassed. We have been disgusted. Adversity has offered up a challenge and now we have a choice. Do we take that challenge or do we pack up our things and get out of town before the hurricane hits? Is it over?
I said it before but it needs to be said again Ė itís all about pride . . .