By: Scott Day, Assistant AD for Athletic PR
As the father of three young children, I’ve spent plenty of time worrying about their futures in today’s society. Like most in the world, I’ve seen the increasing division, entitlement and “woe is me” attitudes that surround us on a daily basis.
Then there’s the 2016 Richmond Spiders Football team.
Plenty of feel-good stories don’t get enough publicity on this team, but let’s take some time to appreciate what this team has put on display for the past 14 weeks.
There are 95 guys in that locker room, from all walks of life. From the back woods of North Carolina to downtown Atlanta, from outdoorsmen to businessmen, from all races and backgrounds, these 95 guys have come together for a common goal: Frisco.
Along that journey to Frisco, life sent plenty of road blocks and detours that could’ve easily knocked them off course and no one would have questioned why the season didn’t go as planned.
18 season-ending injuries? Nine starters done? It’s ok guys, thanks for trying your best.
But not when you have guys like Omar Howard and Thomas Evans leading the way.
Not when you have humble, soft-spoken stars like Winston Craig and Brian Brown, who will go down as two of the best to ever put on the Richmond Spiders uniform, but yet you’d never know it.
Not when you have guys like Griffin Trau. A walk-on who might be mistaken for a high school kid, but whose heart and determination is the size of Godzilla, a guy who allowed competition to bring out the best of him and who booted home his 23rd field goal of the year, a CAA record, to send his team to the FCS Quarterfinals.
Not when you have guys like Tyler Wilkins. A quiet, but extremely talented Richmond native who didn’t hang his head after a miscue, but instead made a catch that will forever live in Spider history.
Not when you have guys like Will McCombs. A walk-on who self-admittedly doesn’t feel like he should be in this position, but worked his tail off and came up with perhaps the biggest play of Saturday’s game with a blocked punt.
Oh yeah, and then there’s that whole Kevin Johnson story.
You want to talk about selflessness? You want to talk about the definition of a team? Look no further.
Those same 95 guys have no plans of patting themselves on the back and stopping their journey now, but allow me, as a parent to thank you.
Thank you for giving me a daily reminder that when you have the mentality that John Wooden once mentioned, “It’s amazing what can be accomplished when no one cares who gets the credit.”
Anything can happen.