To understand what is going on at East Tennessee State right now, you’re going to have to be able to reflect … and project. The Bucs are one of the most unique stories in the FCS this year.
Right now, there are 11 “Redshirt Seniors” who can look back to 2014 when they signed on to restart a football program and hit practice dummies and themselves for an entire fall. That’s the reflection part.
When it comes to projecting, you need to put yourself in the mindset of these same seniors and try to envision being in their shoes in say, 40 years. What moments will they look back on? Will it be playing a football game at NASCAR’s Bristol Motor Speedway? Or could it be battling the mighty Tennessee Volunteers at Rocky Top – the iconic towering stadium on the Tennessee River that every young football player who grows up in the Volunteer State dreams of playing on?
Or maybe it’s the fact these seniors already have clinched a winning regular season for ETSU for the first time in nearly two decades? The Bucs went a decade without football from 2004-14, with the last winning season coming when the current seniors were toddlers and the current freshmen weren’t even walking yet – 2001.
All of the above is and will be memorable – but what they’ll likely remember most is the next month of the 2018 season, and whether the 6-1 Bucs can finish what they’ve started. They’ve won close ball games, are undefeated against the FCS – and this weekend they’ll have to go through a tough (and ticked off) Wofford team if they want to inch closer to a potential Southern Conference title and the first FCS Playoff spot at the school in 22 years.
Three of those 11 seniors talked about it with HERO Sports.