Finally, I grabbed my IDAHO sweatshirt and jacket and walked out the door. I climbed in my pick-up and as I drove I fiddled with the radio trying to find the LSU game. About the bottom of the Lewiston hill I found a station from Casper, Wyoming broadcasting and listened as Tennessee tied it up.
About Genessee, Tennessee scored again and then added a field goal. The announcers were pronouncing Tennessee as too fast and too strong for LSU, three straight possessions and three straight scores.
I lingered in the Dome parking lot as LSU was driving the ball, but what the "hay", Que sera sera, I didn't drive 30 miles to sit in a parking lot and listen to a football game. I had a basketball game to attend to. I grabbed my "lucky" cap and bounced out of the truck.
As usual, the wind was blowing and it seemed a lot colder than it was. I wondered if we could keep the game respectable.
Gee, what a pathetic crowd to watch Idaho play Montana. Most people didn't want to watch a blow out I thought, after all Montana had beaten WSU and WSU had handled us.
I hadn't made the Eastern game as my son's team was playing that night and he comes before the Vandals. After that game, Coach Perry had said we were improving but I chalked that up as "coach speak".
Montana won the tip but they missed their impatient attempt. Our zone defense seemed to confuse them and the Vandals rotated with newly found skill and precision. Coach Perry barked out instructions constantly and the kids were listening.
On offense, we patiently moved the ball around the perimeter, in and out, back and forth. There, an opening, and up goes Rodney for a 4'jumper, he misses but grabs his own rebound and in it goes. And so it went, all night long. The Vandals were dogged on defense and patient on offense. We rebounded with furiosity. As a big Montanan stretched for a rebound, there'd be 4, 6, 8 arms in white jersey's pickin and poking at the ball. Time after time, the good guys would win the battle and up we'd go for another attempt.
We win 48-47, and I walk out slappin' backs and grinning. It's been a long time since I've felt this good leavin' the Dome. How sweet it is.
Was this a turning point, who knows, that depends on your expectations, but I feel real good for the kids. They played hard and Coach Perry has something to point to. "See, if you play the way I ask, we can win" He might say.
Make no mistake though, we've got a darn good coach in Coach Perry and 5 years from now we'll be scrambling to keep him.
And yea, it was nice to drive home without screaming "YOU SUCK" at the radio.