I noticed something the other night when we played Furman.
Tom was first on defense, at the top of the key right after the Paladins crossed the line. Whenever we scored, and the cheers sparked the air, he doubled back get ready. He held his arms out wide, wingspanned, and crouched down low to block. And... as he did it, as he puffed breath in and out, as his feet did little skids to prepare... he was smiling. And Jake, the current SoCohen Player of the Week (yeah, I know), the most recent 'Cat to get his own personal mascot, pumped his fist and celebrated after every one of our baskets.
It got messy at times, but so much of it made me realize that these guys have been playing together for two, three years. They know each other. They communicate well, and that strengthens the talent they already have as individuals. And, mainly, they're having fun. There have been some great moments over the last two years (both Charleston beatings spring to mind, as does Steve's miracle shot) and I know these guys have always supported each other and always love to play the game, but it's been tough going, too. So to watch this team start the season at 6 and 1 (#catswin is a popular hashtag these days), and to watch them start to really know and believe in possibility, is exciting. On Saturday, it was cool to see them believe it on the court as Thomas, Stephen, Brendan and Ben watched from the stands.
I love watching the endzone too, wearing their awesome t-shirts (why didn't we make endzone tshirts?? such a good idea!) and having a blast like we used to do. It all seems to be part of some kind of resurgence, or maybe we should just call it a life cycle -- experience and trust commitment care will always end up in an excellent, meaningful formation at some point in time, moment by moment.
I don't know what will happen tomorrow against Vanderbilt. I don't know what will happen on Saturday against Charlotte. But I do know that this is a special group of players, and they're making their own history, and it's the coolest thing to watch them discover it.