Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Nevada 10/9/11

Another nationally televised game with the spotlight to ourselves. This is pretty awesome! It's a Friday night lights in the "Biggest Little City in the World." ESPN game against the Wolf Pack. Hoo Ya! I am not going to make the trip to Reno. This will be the first game that we will not have a presence in the stands. I guess I need to figure out a few things about the Wolf Pack. They have two Wolf Mascots. One is named Alphie and the other is Wolfie Jr. I am not sure what happened to Wolfie Sr., but I guess this is their version of a wolf pack. I did find out that they have a kicking record for the school. Nevada's Pat Brady holds the record for the longest punt in college football history with his 99-yard punt against Loyola Marymount on October 28th, 1950. It had to be wind aided, but that still is a long ways. Enough of this Wolf Pack crap. The team is coming off of a huge win against Hawaii and I feel like this game is a must win for us. I had several conversations with Matt during the week. His field goal practice was going well and they had a few things they were working on with his kick offs. His hang times and distance were pretty consistent. I still like the right to right kick, but when you have five different kicks you practice every week you never know what will be called during the game. The team hit Reno around 3:15 CST. They were going to check into the hotel first and then head out to do their walk thru. They ended up going to a high school stadium. I thought this was sort of odd since I thought all walkthrough’s are done at the field you were going to play at. I guess when you are just going through your substitution packages it really does not matter. Matt was impressed with the dryness of the air and the snow on the mountain tops. It would be dinner, a movie and lights out. I am so glad Friday is here! Matt said he had a team breakfast at 9:30, position meeting at 10:30, chapel at 1:40, team lunch/dinner at 2:30 and hit's the bus at 3:50 for a 4:00 arrival at Mackay Stadium. It sounds like their day is pretty organized, but with some gaps. Matt did mention to me that the hotel had a driving range that had floating greens out in a fake lake. It has been a crazy week with the business. Next week is what we call in the travel business the World's Largest Cruise Event. I have great deals and chance to win free cruises. It should be a fun week. I am ready for some football. I have been wondering about this game all week. How will we react? With both teams coming off of huge wins the week before, will we be focused? We have to multi task as an offense. We cannot have too many eggs in one basket! Time will tell very soon. I will go at this one by my lonesome. My wife is in Dallas and I am in San Antonio. I say by myself, but my two dogs will be watching with me. It's pretty funny though. When I tell them Matt is on the TV, they go look out the window by the front door. I have decided that my meal of choice will be my infamous Whine & Wangs. The drums will start marinating around noon and they will hit the steamer around six. I know it sounds weird and there is more to the process, but you can check out my madness at the Whine & Wangs link. As the game approaches I start my pacing. I am a horrible TV watcher if it has to do with someone I know. I need a few more glasses of whine. I see a glimpse of Matt as Nevada gets set to kick off. Matt always wants the first kick! The kick goes to Livas and the race is on. We score in the next couple of plays. As Matt gets ready to kick his PAT I have to go stand in the kitchen and watch. Don't ask me what difference it makes, but I have a real bad habit! I am super excited right now. As half time approaches I am very concerned. We go into half down 17 - 7. I hope the team gets refocused. I take my intermission to partake in the Wang portion of my meal. They have nice heat and my whine choice is paired nicely. It does not look very pretty when you get wang sauce on your whine glass. I have to tell a funny! Matt said that he and Cade came out about 10 minutes after half was over so they could warm up and the whole stadium booed them for several minutes! As he was kicking during his warm-ups before the team came out they would blow air horns every time he would kick the ball. Sounds like a concentration test to me. Matt would be short sleeve in the first half and long sleeve in the second half. I did not notice, but it was true. Nevada scores early and it is not looking good. La Tech answers with a score and we have some hope so I thought. Nevada scores right at the end of the 3rd quarter and early in the 4th Midway through the 4th we get down to the 21 and it is 4th down. We need touchdowns and out comes Matt for a 38 yd field goal. NOOOOO! Sure I want to see Matt kick the ball, but I want the team to win also. We need touchdowns. Matt would miss his first real makeable field goal of his college career. La Tech would go on and lose 37 - 14. This is not what I expected. Matt called me right before he would board the bus to the airport. All I can say is he was pissed that they lost and he was pissed that he missed a chip shot. I asked him what happened and he said "Dad, I did not pay attention to one small detail. I did not line up properly. It will not happen again!" "Yes the wind was blowing and the field goal posts where only high school height, but college width and I missed." I know Matt will learn from this. He is way to mentally sound. He watched film with Coach Dooley on the way back to Ruston. His last kick had a 4.26 hang time and Coach Dooley was stoked. They just need to work on the coverage. This is a quote from Matt after he returned to his apartment Saturday morning at 7:00AM "I'll walk through the fire if this is what it takes to take me even higher. Then I’ll come through like I do when the world keeps testing me." I am not sure where he got his mental toughness, but it did not come from me. Matt will be fine and loves learning life’s lessons. I am a firm believer of failing at something every day. This is how we improve in life. I have to admit that I did have two pair of drawers on during the game, but all was good. I can use them for another game. I will be attending the New Mexico State and cannot wait to say hey to Matt. There will be many family and friends at the game and I cannot wait to visit with you all. We were in this same position last year and we went 8 - 5 and went bowling. I have confidence that we will be knocking down pins again. The pictures that are in this blog were taken by Mr. Tom Morris. He has allowed me to use them in my blog. If anyone wants any photos of your favorite kicker please visit La Tech Sports Pix. Thanks again Tom! I just wanted to thank all of the family and friends for all of the support. We truly appreciate it. Let’s get ready to kick some Aggie butt! Until our paths cross again, have a blessed week! College Football Dad!