It was a busy weekend in Maryville. On Friday, the 2001-02 Bearcat basketball team was inducted into the Northwest Missouri State Hall of Fame. Eleven members of that team were in attendance for Friday Night’s Banquet. Those included: Matt Rowan, Scott Fleming, Sam Sutera, Ben McCollum, Brandon Rold, Floyd Jones, Keenan Weir, Kelvin Parker, Jesse Shaw, Chris Borchers and Joel Yeldell.
The stories began to flow and it didn’t take long for everyone to pick up where they left off when leaving Northwest. The brotherhood and family feel of Northwest basketball is still in tact.
Saturday morning came early for the former players who suited up for an 8 a.m. scrimmage. The former players still had some skills (some more than others), still had some smarts (some more than others), but were lacking physical conditioning (mostly Scott Fleming and Matt Rowan).
Following the scrimmage, the “old timers” spoke with our current team. Here’s a few things our guys heard from the Hall of Famer’s:
- This is the best time of your life being with your teammates and working for a common goal.
- Many of us would do anything to come back and play one game in a Bearcat uniform so give it everything you have, because at some point it will be over.
- No suicide sprint is harder than bills and kids, so embrace the hard work now (that one was Rowan).
I believe these messages helped put some things in perspective for our guys.
It was exciting to get together with so many great people on homecoming and watch an exciting Bearcat win on the gridiron!!
On Tuesday the MIAA preseason picks were released. Our basketball team was picked to finish 10th in a league of 11. Let me first state that polls are usually about as accurate as Matt Cassell was last Sunday (25.3 QB rating vs. San Diego) and we all know what dogs do to polls (poles).
I have no problem with the pick and I expected us to be picked low. We failed to win 20 games for the first time in four years, graduated the fifth-leading scorer in school history, retired the most successful coach in school history and have a young and inexperienced team. The only thing that would have made me happier would be if we were picked 11th!
We are excited that nobody is giving us a chance and we are excited that we have something to prove to everyone! Stay tuned…
Unfortunately, I have to end this blog with some sad news. Blue Springs High School, my alma mater, unexpectedly lost a very special person this past weekend. Associate Principal and former basketball coach and teacher Slade Morlang died of a heart attack. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and friends. Coach Morlang was a great coach of mine, teacher of mine, and more importantly, an unbelievable person. He will be missed.
I hope everyone has a great week.