After this loss to South Carolina in Game 1 of the College World Series. I have a hard time putting words together to describe the feeling other than Bill Simmons’ “Stomach Punch” game. I can only imagine what Sully can say to them. All credit due to South Carolina for making huge plays when they had to and a crushing feeling for us to let them get the eventual winning run without having to do much of anything (2 errors on 1 play).
After moping for a few moments, I thought back to the 2008 football loss to Ole Miss and how everyone in the locker room must have felt and been thinking, “Here we go again… just like 2007”. Then our Heisman winning quarterback stepped to the podium and gave what Gator fans will forever refer to as, “The speech”. While that’s not likely to happen here and the baseball team’s margin for error is zero, it made me look into my youtube files and find a video by Kevin Brueck. It’s dubs Al Pacino’s Any Given Sunday “Inch by Inch” speech over Gator football highlights. While it is football specific, I thought it appropriate for our baseball team as well.
I’ve seen some pretty down messages on Twitter from Gator Fans, bracing themselves for a loss, and it’s sad. They need us and positive energy from us more than ever. So while I know not a single player or coach from the team will read this, and not a stich of original thought is present, maybe it will get you jacked up enough to BOUNCE BACK and give the boys your all on Tuesday (AND WEDNESDAY) night!! Without further ado… The speech… and the video (try not to get too jacked up for football season too soon!):
I don’t know what to say really.
Three minutes, to the biggest battle of our professional lives
all comes down to today.
Either we heal… as a team… or we are going to crumble.
Inch by inch, play by play, till we’re finished.
We are in hell right now, gentlemen… believe me
and we can stay here and get the shit kicked out of us
or, we can fight our way back into the light.
We can climb out of hell.
You find out that life is just a game of inches.
So is football (Baseball).
Because in either game, life or football (baseball)
the margin for error is so small.
I mean… one half step too late or to early, you don’t quite make it.
One half second too slow or too fast, and you don’t quite catch it.
The inches we need are everywhere around us.
They are in every break of the game, every minute, every second.
On this team, we fight for that inch
On this team, we tear ourselves, and everyone around us to pieces for that inch.
We CLAW with our finger nails for that inch.
Cause we know, when we add up all those inches
that’s going to make the fucking difference…
between WINNING and LOSING
between LIVING and DYING.
I’ll tell you this… in any fight
it is the guy who is willing to die, who is going to win that inch.
And I know, if I am going to have any life anymore
it is because, I am still willing to fight, and die for that inch
because that is what LIVING is.
It’s the six inches in front of your face.
Now I can’t make you do it.
You gotta look at the guy next to you… Look into his eyes.
Now I think you are going to see a guy who will go that inch with you.
You are going to see a guy, who will sacrifice himself for this team (and I don’t mean BUNT!)
because he knows when it comes down to it, you are gonna do the same thing for him.
That’s a team, gentlemen
and either we heal now… as a team…
or we will die as individuals.
That’s football (Baseball) guys. That’s all it is.
Now, whattaya gonna do?
Go Gators! Beat the Cocks!
Here’s the video