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September 19, 2012
Berry talks Baylor
The lights in Malone Stadium will shine brightly on Friday night as the ULM Warhawks (1-1), who have become "America's Team", opens the 2012 home portion of their schedule against the Baylor Bears (2-0). While ULM is looking to continue to prove that their back-to-back, toe-to-toe games against SEC teams is no fluke, Head Coach Toddy Berry just wants the team to be 1-0 this week.
"Baylor is a very good football team, and this should be a very good football game," Berry said. "I'm anxious for Friday, I think you are going to see two teams go out there and lay it on the line. It's going to be fast break football at a speed that you've never seen before."
As for last week's loss against Auburn, Berry only has one word, disappointment.
"I think there comes a time period when you have to get past the moral victory mentality," he said. "For our team to have been as disappointed as they were after that game against a good Auburn program, tells me that we've made a lot of progress. After the Arkansas win, there was a lot of euphoria, but I think we responded to the process of being the same person. We didn't play a great game, but we played a good game."
Kicking off misunderstandings
Following the loss at Auburn last week, many felt that Coach Berry was second guessing the abilities of his kicker Justin Manton, something he addressed in the press conference.
"I had full confidence that Justin Manton was going to make the field goal; otherwise I wouldn't have sent him out there. I was upset that while that was the intelligent move, to put points on the board. I was upset that my gut told me that we needed to win the game right then. It was about that I went with 30 years of coaching rather than what my gut said, and sometimes it's better to go with your gut. If I had it to do all over again I would still go with my gut. I have confidence in his kicking, he's kicked really well."
Baylor program parallels ULM
Just five years ago when Baylor Head Coach Art Briles took over the Baylor program, they had not seen a winning season since the 1995 season. Now in he's put together a program that currently holds the nation's second longest winning streak, a Heisman Trophy winner, and two straight bowl appearances.
"I think Art Briles is one of the most fantastic coach's in college football," Berry said. "It's hard to win everyplace. When you are at a place when you don't have the facilities, the money, or the recruiting bases and all of those things; those are the special coaches with the most difficult jobs, but are getting things done. His guys are going to play the right way and go for broke. They are not going to let anything sway them away from winning."
If you win they will come
The Warhawk players have questioned the ULM coaching staff about how to get more support, and were always told these words by the staff. Now the ticket sales are on pace for a record crowd and a game environment like never seen before in Malone Stadium.
"I'm excited for our players," Berry said. "I would love for our players to come out for warm-ups and see a great crowd. I think it would motivate them. It's all up to all of us, all of us that care deeply about the university and want to see things happen. It's about all of us being all-in."