Monthly Archives: January 2016

Europe Book Excerpt

Razorbacks vs. Geissen #9Been too long since I posted. I wanted to let everyone know that I’ve finally finished the first draft of my book about my season with the Ravensburg Razorbacks. Now comes the long process of editing and looking for publishers.

Here is an excerpt from Chapter 12, hope you like it!

…It’s a sunny day and around 900 supporters fill the stands. The Sacristans are in white jerseys and purple pants. Our players wear black jerseys with red numbers and blue inserts, white helmet with a blue Razorback logo.
In European fashion, our uniforms resemble NASCAR racecars, with sponsors’ logos everywhere. Patches for Rigg’s Burger Restaurant are on the right hip and left butt cheek. Schrezenmaier Kaltetechnik is across the chest. On the helmet are stickers for Gessler+Funk Office Supplies and Kreuzer Immobilien.
The team seems to appreciate the home atmosphere as much as I do. Unlike the last two games, we come out on fire, leaving no doubt about how the game is going to go.
Inside zone right is the first play and it’s executed perfectly.
Garret holds the ball out for Steve and sees the Sacristan end crashing down the line towards our running back. Garret pulls the ball away and attacks the edge. When the safety flies towards Garret, he pitches to Micki running the bubble. Micki explodes past the block thrown by split receiver Martin Kastle for a 70-yards touchdown. We’re up 7-0 on the first play of the game.
A three and out is followed by a nice punt return from Jeremy setting us up inside the 20. Four plays later, Steve pounds into the end zone from the three and we’re up 14-0. Freiburg can’t handle our fast tempo. They’re gassed by the third play of every offensive drive. We’re dominating the trenches on both sides of the ball. Our offensive line opens huge holes for Steve, Kevin and Garret. Before our lead gets too large, I call some passes to let Garret throw some balls, but he sees so much open field that he mostly just scrambles for big gains.
By halftime, we’re up 42-0 on the way to a 61-3 final.
Winning big is fun, but these games make me feel guilty as well. There’s been some grumbling around the league that we don’t belong in the Regionaliga at all. We’d chosen the drop from the GFL2 though we’d qualified to stay. We’re better organized and funded than many teams we play. Today’s result is an example of this imbalance. Freiburg was simply outmatched in every way.
This dynamic isn’t exclusive to Europe. It’s a feature of football everywhere and at all levels. Infrastructure, experience and money differences create huge inequities. In football, more than any other sport, teams get what they deserve. The Razorbacks have more people who’ve put in more hours. We have better financial support for better import players and have more quality coaches than the Sacristans. The result of this difference in man-hours, experience and Euros is a butt-kicking. It may be ugly, but it’s a fair outcome. We deserve to beat teams like this.
I’ve spent many years coaching on the opposite end of this equation without whining about it. I tell myself to enjoy being on the top of blowouts like this. I’ve paid my dues to be in this position. That we’re better situated and prepared than Freiburg is nothing to apologize for. As a competitor though, battles between well-matched teams are more enjoyable than days like this…

 

 

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