Seagoing vessels sound a 4-6 second whistle blast to indicate that they are underway; football programs have a 20-minute press conference. And so, with Saturday’s media day, the 2013 Navy football season is officially upon us.
The press conference itself was pretty tame, although it did contain what was probably the only reference to male menopause you’ll ever hear at one of these. Anyway, TO THE LINKS:
The most prominent theme in these stories is optimism, which surprises me a little bit. Not that the press conference wasn’t optimistic; most preseason pressers are, and the very first thing Coach Niumatalolo said was that he was excited about the team. It just wasn’t the prevailing vibe that I got when I watched. My biggest takeaway was that everyone was guarding against complacency. The line of the morning came from defensive captain Cody Peterson, responding to a question about whether the team was more confident this year coming off of a winning season compared to when they started last season after going 5-7: “We’re certainly not overconfident. We still remember how the last game went, and that one stings.”
Not that it matters much, but I thought the players handled themselves very well, especially the captains. When asked if there was any new slogan or team philosophy for this season, they said that there wasn’t. They like the INAM attitude from last year and want to keep it going. That says a lot about this duo. There can be a lot of temptation to make your own mark on an organization when you’re placed in a leadership position, especially when you’re at a place like USNA. These guys don’t see a point in doing something for narcissism’s sake though. They are leading by example by demonstrating that it truly isn’t about “me.” I was impressed.
Other than that, there wasn’t much in the way of noteworthy soundbites or nuggets of information. Coach Niumatalolo didn’t have much to say about the schedule, saying (predictably) that he was only focused on Indiana. He also declined to mention whether any newcomers might make an impact, saying that there are some guys with potential but that they have yet to prove themselves. I’m sure we’ll learn all about that in the weeks to come.
The champagne bottle has been broken and 2013 is officially launched. Beat Indiana!