Win It For…
First and foremost, all credit for this post goes to “muhawk” over at Miami Hawk Talk. It’s one of the most inspiring things I’ve ever read and I definitely wanted to share it here. Love & Honor!
One shift at a time, one period at a time, one win at a time.
Win four games, Miami. Win four games, guys, and win the NCAA national title.
Win it for yourself, so regardless of what happens in the rest of your playing career and the rest of your life, you will always be able to say you won a national title at Miami.
Win it for your parents, because they likely spent too many hours to count getting up before dawn and driving to God-knows-where so you would have a chance to roll around the ice while playing youth hockey.
Win it for Dr. Shriver, Lloyd Goggin, and other administrators who had their fingerprints on the program in its infancy and all the others who were basically crazy enough to think a school located in southwest Ohio would and should be able to compete with the hockey elite from schools in Minnesota, Michigan, and New England.
Win it for Coach Cady. The man is basically the father of this program, and helped bring this team from an independent to the CCHA, before stepping down as coach to help develop the program, a program that was on the verge of getting the ax a few years later. Coach Cady poured his heart and soul into this program and has helped build what we see today. He deserves the chance to hold the NCAA Championship trophy, and not just to hand it off to BU.
Win it for Coach Blasi. He’s the man who turned this program from CCHA also-ran into The Brotherhood and a consistent national contender. It used to be a big deal to see Miami’s name on Selection Sunday. Now, it’s basically old hat. Frozen Four runs are now annual expectations, not impossible dreams. Rico made that happen and did so in a way that should bring pride to all Miami students, alums and fans.
Win it for Burkie. Yeah, that still applies. Every single time I see his name in print or hear it on television, I still feel immense pride in our school and pride in the college program we cheer for, because it is also Brendan’s school and this is the program he had such a major impact on in just four years. It’s an impact I’m sure he didn’t even fully comprehend at the time but one that reaches far beyond the city limits of Oxford and continues to this day. The Brotherhood was and is lucky to have Brendan in its group.
Win it for the guys who came before you. There are certainly too many names to mention here: some are playing in the NHL, many others aren’t. Just to name a few since this recent run started: Kompon, Hogeboom, Greene, Davis, Zatkoff, Jones, Martinez, Roeder, Mercier, Wingels, Palmer, Miele, Camper, etc. These men and others donned the Miami jersey and gave everything they had trying to reach the dream. Many never had the chance, while others came oh so tantalizingly close to the summit. The Brotherhood isn’t just about the current crop, it’s about the young men who kept fighting through so many frustrating years to get the program to this point, a point where, once again, Frozen Four runs are now annual expectations, not impossible dreams.
Win it for your brothers. Clearly, they’re not just teammates, classmates or friends. They are and always will be your brothers and this is your chance to raise a banner with your Miami family.
Finally, win it for Miami. The old gal is 203 years old and she is still as beautiful as always. One thing that is missing from her résumé is a D1 NCAA title. You can change that in the coming weeks. It won’t be easy. Hell, it will be one of the hardest things you try to accomplish. But it’s supposed to be difficult. If it weren’t difficult, everybody would do it. The fact that it is agonizingly difficult is why it is great. This program has felt pain. It’s time to experience the ultimate glory.
Go Miami. Love and Honor.