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***ARTICLE*** On the Prowl: Becoming the Hunted

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  • ***ARTICLE*** On the Prowl: Becoming the Hunted

    On the Prowl: Becoming the Hunted

    They say all things worth caring about require sacrifice. As I heard my alarm go off at 6:30 in the morning in Cedar Falls after attending a particularly boisterous Halloween party the night before, I knew exactly what they meant. I was willing to make quite a few concessions if only the game would suddenly be rescheduled at 6:00 in the evening. If only...

    Once my self-affirming pity party was over, I made the trip with my dad down to Macomb, Illinois. UNI was to be guests at Hanson Field for the second straight year, something Coach Farley suggested displeased him. The only consolation coming from playing a conference foe on the road two years in a row would be that it was Macomb, Illinois, and that the trip wasn't as taxing as some others in the conference. It turns out that a lot of people bearing UNI insignia thought the same way.

    We arrived at the stadium right before kickoff. Our tickets said Section B, Row K, seats 27 and 28. We looked up and found that a thicky-packed group of Panther fans had annexed our seats. We simply shrugged and sat in the empty row right in front of them. More and more fans of the purple and gold (the good kind) persuasion filed in, making UNI's fan presence very real, and very loud.

    The Panther delegation was just as loud as the entire Leatherneck crowd in attendance, and were loud throughout the game. UNI proceeded to put another signature performance together, holding the vaunted Western Illinois rushing attack to a mere 165 yards en route to only 213 total yards on the day. UNI's defense has become a formidable force, possibly one of the best in the nation. UNI's offense continues to evolve from game to game with freshman Zach Davis doing an admirable job of filling in for Pat Grace. This team just finds ways to win. A cliche, yes. The truth? Also yes.

    UNI sits at 7-2, and back-to-back playoff bids for the first time since 1996 is becoming a distinct possibility. They're back in the top five this season. A hyper-loyal fanbase continues to back them up whether it be in a packed UNI-Dome or a loud traveling crew. Things are good in Pantherland.

    There was something else I noticed at the game Saturday, however. With the victory comes the spoiled. I remarked to my father that UNI is likely the most hated team in the Valley. With the consistent success, the large UNI-Dome crowds... it's probably too much for a lot of fans of other teams to handle. I noted a few weeks ago that we would soon have an archrival in North Dakota State because their fans are cut from the exact same cloth. In the meantime, UNI is at the top again, and the resentment is palpable.

    These are the prices to pay when your program is consistently successful. The other, of course, is making the necessary sacrifices when you're a member of Panther Nation. In the end, it's all going to be worth it. Isn't it worth it now?

    "Once it starts, it never ends."
    -Eldon Miller

  • #2
    Re: ***ARTICLE*** On the Prowl: Becoming the Hunted

    Brilliant...I loved the article Marc! I agree, we are the envy of the MVFC. Just ask SIU.
    The Lord reigns, let the earth be glad; let the distant shores rejoice, clouds and thick darkness surround Him; righteousness and justice are the foundation of His throne. Fire goes before Him, and consumes his foes on every side; His lightning lights up the world; the earth sees and trembles; the mountains melt like wax before the Lord of all the earth. The heavens proclaim His righteousness and all peoples will see His glory.


    • #3
      Re: ***ARTICLE*** On the Prowl: Becoming the Hunted

      It was a lot of fun being the loudest fans in Macomb Saturday. It was much like an Iowa/Minnesota game in the Metrodome.
      "They keep saying that what really matters is not whether you win or lose, but how you played the game. The trouble is that the best way to determine how you played the game is by whether you won or lost." - Anonymous


      • #4
        Re: ***ARTICLE*** On the Prowl: Becoming the Hunted

        Originally posted by Marc Wigim View Post
        I remarked to my father that UNI is likely the most hated team in the Valley.
        More accurately, UNI is once again returning to most "hated"/envied team in the valley. If those sentiments are present now, I'm fairly sure they were around during the TA days when we pretty much always won the conference championship.


        • #5
          Re: ***ARTICLE*** On the Prowl: Becoming the Hunted

          Nice article!

          Please continue these often.


          • #6
            Re: ***ARTICLE*** On the Prowl: Becoming the Hunted

            Nice article Marc! Keep up the good work.