Editor’s note: Today reporter Kieren Duncan is a wide receiver for the CSU-Pueblo football team. This story is told from his perspective.
When October comes around every year, it brings along many things: colder weather that causes students to bundle up on their way to class, the sweet-tooth inducing holiday of Halloween, birthdays for Libras all around the world and the second half of the college football season.
Head coach John Wristen reminds players every year of his philosophy when it comes to playing the sport in October.
“Teams have to play their best ball in October in order to give themselves a chance to win in November and December,” he said.
This means that during the four game span in October, if you’re playing at the top of your ability, you are giving yourself a chance to finish out the season strong and carry a winning momentum into December.
The philosophy is simple enough and has been proven to work time-and-time again. However, it’s the actual execution which teams tend to struggle with more than the concept.
The ThunderWolves don’t seem to have a problem with the execution aspect. Every year around this time, the team gets a fire in their eye. It doesn’t really matter what has come before this or what adversities lie ahead, this team consistently plays their best ball in the month of October and gives themselves a chance to win in the final two months of the season.
Last weekend against rival Adam’s State in Alamosa was no exception. It was truly a good old-fashioned Pack victory as the ThunderWolves rolled to a 56-0 victory over the Grizzlies and dominated on every side of the ball.
The ThunderWolves were able to accumulate just under 600 yards of total offense while holding the Adam’s State offense to under 250 total yards and only 10 on the ground.
“Well I think that we just came in and played Pack football and we had three aspects of it. Offense, defense and special teams. They all lead to a great victory like we had,” Wristen said after the game.
It truly was “Pack football” being played on Saturday as the two-headed running attack of Cameron and Bernard McDondle combined for a total of 394 yards and 5 touchdowns.
On the other side of the ball, the defense set a program record with six interceptions, five of which were made by redshirt freshman.
“I think we stepped up big time,” said redshirt freshman cornerback Darius Williams. “We all fed off of each other and had a successful shutout which was also big time. My interception was an awesome moment but I couldn’t have gotten it if everybody wasn’t doing their job.”
Williams had two interceptions on the day and returned one of them for a touchdown, earning him Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference Defensive Player of the Week honors.
As someone who’s in the locker room with these guys day in and day out, I can tell you it’s incredibly inspiring and special to be around a team that isn’t just satisfied with winning games but strives to dominate them.
This attitude will be much needed as the ThunderWolves take on Fort Lewis for the homecoming game on Oct. 10. Fort Lewis is undefeated in conference play and the only team that handed CSU-Pueblo a loss in last year’s championship run.
“We are going to find a way to go 1-0 this week against a really good Fort Lewis team,” Wristen said.