The Daily Bongo
Bound for Glory
Record for the season:
Overall Record: 1-8
Section Record: 0-5
Previous season: 1-8
Fri., Aug. 26 at Chartiers Valley L 14 - 7
Fri., Sep. 2 at Albert Gallatin W 38 - 14
Fri., Sep. 9 Hopewell L 47 - 15
Sat., Sep. 17 at Moon L 21 - 17
Fri., Sep. 23 Elizabeth Forward L 21 - 13
Fri., Sep. 30 Ambridge L 10 - 7
Fri., Oct. 7 at New Castle L 34 - 3
Fri., Oct. 14 Blackhawk L 47 - 16
Fri., Oct. 21 at West Allegheny L 28-6
Wednesday, November 9, 2005 -- Early Evening
Before the Pens game, I'm catching up on last night's Bound for Glory. The show starts four days before the game, and we see the local Rita's ice and other business. We are back at JoJo's Place for a meal and discussion with Ray Crockett and Dick Butkus. Montour will be playing New Castle in the upcoming game. Crockett thinks that the team is as different as night and day. There is such a difference between Crockett and Butkus. Crockett says it will be all right and his attitude is that he will keep on coaching and the students will be all right. At the end of the meal, Crockett says that he will let Butkus pay for the meal because it is the last one that they will have and that Crockett has paid for the others. We hear that Bryce is okay. He's the kid who was hurt in the last episode. He was kept overnight and has a neck brace, but he is okay. He won't be coming back because he has to be out for 4 weeks. Bryce has nothing because his whole uniform was cut off of him. Bryce's diagnosis was a severe concussion, and he looks really banged up and bruised in the face. Butkus says that he has to communicate to the team that they have to suit up and go after it every day. Anthony Pastin says that it's hard to just get beaten by a little bit and still lose. It seems last year they lost each game by 20 points, and this year, their total over all games is 22 points. That's a big change. Crockett talks about how he talked to EJ about the game and if he is ready. Crockett tells the team how EJ said that they would have won the last game if he (EJ) had made less mistakes. Crockett said that he needs to hear that from more of the other players especially seniors. Crockett is calling DJ a loser because in the last game, he claimed to have a sore shoulder in one play, and then was fine in the next play. So Crockett said there's a difference between pain and injury. Crockett said that the students need tough love. They need to be told off at times, but then encouraged at others. Crockett really is a very good coach, and I am impressed by him. Butkus is a sore loser and cry baby, and really doesn't interact much with the kids and it is more evident in the later episodes.
Three days before the game we see Lou Cerro drive up in a beat up old 1992 van with 162,000 miles on it. Crockett tells Butkus that Butkus is a hall of famer and should help Cerro out. Butkus says that he will open the door for Cerro. Butkus is talking to Meat about kids who would go the extra mile and he tells Meat (Anthony Iorio) that he only found that quality in Meat out of the whole team. The Army sargent, Drill Sargent Self, has been working with Meat, and he asks if Meat wants to take on the role to be a leader and a role model and do some good. The kids are now working out. Crockett and Butkus drive up in a really nice truck. Crockett calls them over and Butkus says that they have made progress and that Crockett and Butkus will be leaving, and they talked to someone at Dodge to get him a new Dodge Ram megacab because Cerro can't be late to practice because his tires are flat and he has an old rickety car. Crockett calls all the coaches into the cab. Crockett tells Cerro that they really appreciate all that Cerro has done for them. Cerro calls his wife and tells her about the truck and how shocked he is. Cerro says that he never had a new car in his life and probably never will again. His wife was crying when he told her over the phone.
Two days before the game, and Sargent Self show sup at Meat's house at 5:55 to wake him up. Self says that he is trying to keep him fired up and motivated. Self tells him that the first step is the hardest one and welcomes Meat to the next level. Self says that you have to win your individual battle in order for everyone to win. Crockett is back coaching the team. He's encouraging the team, and telling them that they have to give 100%. Crockett said that Meat can be something special if he steps up and takes what is offered to him. Self says that it is a 200% improvement since th first day. The kids are now at the game arcade having some fun and down time. The four captains of the team get interviewed on a radio show, and their teammates show up to support them. Nick DiIanni says that the team has to give it their all even if they aren't winning. Morgan Singletary says that they are turning around Montour and that next year should be really good.
Day before the game and another practice. EJ Banks is doing good, and DJ Johnson is complaining about how he can't catch new balls. Crockett mocks DJ and they have new balls every Friday night, but maybe they can get some old balls to throw to DJ. Crockett arranges for the team to go to Allegheny School to volunteer. The school is for mentally challenged adults. One older man says that Butkus played football when the guy was a young boy. Morgan says that he thinks seeing the people there really opened his eyes. Anthony Pastin says that seeing the people taught him not to take anything for granted. Butkus shows up at Meat's house with some salsa. It seems that Meat's dad had invited Butkus to dinner to show his appreciation for all that Butkus has done. Meat's father says that it's a once in a life time opportunity. Back at the "Alumni Bar" we hear the old farts talking about how good the team has been doing. One guy says that they have to learn how to win. Another said that they didn't have a winning season since 1997. Everyone is talking about next year and when they make the playoffs.
It's game day. The team loads up into the school buses and head out to New Castle which is around an hour's drive from McKees Rocks. Cerro talks to the team about how they are on a three year losing conference record, and they need to start learning to win. Butkus has them all pray in whichever way they want, and that they should ask that they win and that no one on either team is injured. The game starts poorly for New Castle and Montour recovers a fumble. They can't make a touchdown, but get a field goal and lead 3-0. New Castle is not playing well, and Montour seems to be doing well. Then EJ fumbles and New Castle recovers. Crockett tells EJ that he has to calm down and concentrate on the plays. New Castle gets a touchdown and moves ahead 7-3. EJ is having problems throwing the ball, and Christian Wilson is unable to get anywhere. Then we see DJ bobbling the ball while Crockett has a fit over it. Crockett tells EJ that EJ threw the ball right and that he can't help it if the people aren't catching the ball when they should. There is a drastic change in the game. Montour is playing poorly and New Castle just gets the punt and runs it in for a touchdown. Then we see one of the New Castle guys grabbed the ball right out of EJ's hands and ran it in for a touchdown. The score is now 21-3. Crockett tells them it is about stepping up and being men. They have to take the responsibility and play. As Crockett says in life you get knocked down and you just have to get up and keep playing. Montour goes for a fourth and ten and EJ Banks gets sacked. New Castle is just outplaying Montour. Score is 28-3. The offense is unable to do nothing. EJ fumbles the ball again and New Castle gets the ball. Butkus says that the team took a giant step backwards in one night. Montouor winds up losing the game 34-3. Butkus said that the tendance is to go through the motions. Highlights from the next game which is against Blackhawk. Crockett is on the sidelines, but not Butkus and we don't really see the sidelines, probably because of that. Montour loses 47-16. Then we see the West Allegheny game that has a few highlights of hardhitting. This time we see Butkus on the sidelines. I think that he came to the game because of the controversy over him not showing up. Montour loses the last game of the season 28-6.
The players are clearing out their lockers. Crockett says that even though they didn't accomplish what they wanted with the playoffs, he thinks that the team has improved within themselves. Crockett said that he wished that he has eight more weeks to learn more about the kids. Crockett said that it took him five weeks to learn something about the various players. Crockett admits that he has battled with the students, but he thinks that they took something from their losses and learned about life. Crockett says that he enjoyed it all, and that they all tried hard. Butkus tells the kids that they have grown so much. Butkus said that football is like life, you get knocked down alot, but then you get back up. Butkus and Crockett have an award for them. It is an Energizer award for the student who has done as much as he could and who didn't give up. The award went to Anthony Pastin. Crockett tells the kids that it is up to the rest of the guys to take the step and to go forward with Coach Lou and that the coaches have a deep passion for football. Crockett said that if they learned to make efforts in life and give their all and have passion in life that Crockett and Butkus will have succeeded. DiIanni said that the coaching staff has brought a whole new attitude to the players. DJ says that the team is more like a family. Morgan says that he has good memories. Butkus is shaking the kids hands while Crockett is giving them hugs, and I think that explains it all. The season was a losing one, but maybe the kids have gained a good experience and have learned how to win and how to give their all.
Wednesday, November 2, 2005 -- Later Afternoon
Now for Bound for Glory. This afternoon when I was leaving the Oakland area, there were a slew of different football players and cheerleaders from schools across the city, and my boyfriend saw Morgan Singletary. On that note, now on to the show. Ray Crockett commented that he did not believe that Elizabeth Forward beat Montour, but that Montour beat itself. Nick DiIanni hurt his shoulder in that game. His father thought he should go back into the game because he wasn't that badly hurt. The show starts four days before the game with Ambridge. Dick Butkus is asking Lou Cerro what's the story is with Nick DiIanni, and Cerro is saying that it's something in the shoulder. It seems that DiIanni hit his elbow and popped his shoulder up. Crockett is thinking that Bryce can be quarterback. Cerro thinks that they should do with EJ Banks who is a freshman. DiIanni goes to the doctor who checks out his shoulder and explains where the pain is. It seems that DiIanni may have separated his AC joint. The plan is to take an MRI. Best case is that it will be one week out, worse case is that it is three or four weeks. It seems that DiIanni has never missed a game and would hate to not play in his senior year. At the film session, Crockett goes over what mistakes the linebackers are making. Crockett said that he is frustrated because he wants the kids to win, and they can't seem to find a way to win. Anthony Pastin comments on how everyone is down and how it is hard to get back up. DJ Johnson is commenting on how they come into the game with a good attitude, but that it is frustrating to lose. Butkus talks about the year that his team was 1-13, and before that season, he thought they would have a winning season. Cerro tells them to prep themselves for winning the game this week. The team is going through their exercises on the field. EJ Banks is going to be the quarterback, and he is just a freshman. Crockett sais that they should prepare like DiIanni won't be ready for the game, and see what happens. Bryce would like to get some snaps in, but the coaches won't let him. Crockett asks Bryce if he can learn the plays to which Bryce says he can, and Crockett laughs. EJ seems to look smooth and has a nice arm motion. EJ admits that he is abit nervous because he doens't know what to expect. EJ tells his mom about the plan for him to be the starting quarterback. EJ calls his dad and lets him know about the good news. DiIanni's father talks to his younger son about what was going on at practice. A call comes in and it is good news for DiIanni. It will be a day by day thing, and he might be ready to play by the Friday game.
Butkus and Crockett are getting lunch at JoJo's place where they have the Butkus Buffalo Chicken Sandwich special. It's three days before the game. Butkus doesn't think the other players will rally around EJ. Crockett says that the best thing about EJ is that the players like him and might rally around him. Also, EJ doesn't have any of the bad habits yet. AS Crockett said, EJ just needs to go out and play. Butkus asks what if DiIanni is ready to go. Crockett says that if DiIanni isn't ready by Wednesday, they have to go with EJ. The question is whether EJ can handle being hit. DiIanni doesn't think that he will practice this week, but if he is ready to throw on Friday, he will. Butkus drives on to the field. With him he has two Steelers, Joey Porter, Antwaan Randle El. and Kevin Jones with the Detroit Lions. The kids applaud and Crockett tells them that until you are mathematically eliminated, you keep on trying. Randle El is giving tips on quarterbacking. Randle El is a slash player. He's one of my favorite Steelers. Randle El likes EJ. Kevin Jones is showing the kids how to run some plays. Kevin Jones thought that they were small, but thinks they could still make up for that. Joey Porter show the players how to make hits and stop the run. Even Joey Porter thought they were undersized for a high school football team. He thinks that if they play with heart, they can make it up. Porter tells them that this is the most fun that they will have in football, and they will get out of it what they want to take out of it. Randle El tells them they have to believe. Joey Porter gives them his pep jump and scream. EJ is talking to his parents about playing. His dad, Edgar Banks, said that EJ is just 14. EJ said that he may be small, but he plays big. His little sister made a sign for her brother saying he was "Bound for Glory".
The Montour Band is having a car wash at a local fast food location. The football boosters president challenged the band boosters to a challenge to see who can wash the most cars. They have a trophy at stake and some other challenges. The kids from the band and the football team are on opposite sides of the street. The band sends over their band van, and the football players send over a huge truck. The KFS is giving out free food to boost the band's washings. The band had 130 cars and 5 huge trucks, and the football boosters had 221 cars. The football players were glad to win something. It's all for the school, so it was for a good cause. EJ got his head shaved and Crockett is encouraging him. We also find out that it is Bryce's first year playing football, and he thinks that he can throw the ball. Butkus is asking Bryce if he can fill in if something happens to EJ. DiIanni is saying that he really can't throw, and it is going to be hard to sit out a game. EJ looks good. The problem is in having the receivers not be butterfingers. EJ is trying to stay focused on the game and thinks they can win if the team stays focused. EJ and Christian Wilson are cousins and have been playing football for awhile. The two families meet to play pool in Christian's family's gorgeous pool room. EJ's dad is not worried about him and thinks that he will do a good job.
Practice the day before the game. Butkus thinks that EJ is fine and that he will do well. The kid seems cool. Butkus gives his pep talk about pulling together offensively. He doesn't seem to know EJ's name, but that's Butkus, the non-coach for you. The underclassmen don't seem to be willing to ply. It seems they have already given up. Morgan tells them that he is not going to play in college and that this will be his last four games of football. Pastin tells one kid who laughs while the seniors are giving a pep talk to leave because they don't need people on the team who aren't taking it seriously. It seems that most of them aren't. Back at the "Alumni Bar" (Kennedy Township Fireman's Hall), they are talking about EJ Banks and his potential. They all seem to be up on EJ leading the team to a win. The morning of the game, Pastin's father is asking if the team realizes that if they went three of the next four games, they make the playoffs. As Pastin says, the team just doesn't care. His father says that the seniors have to do something about it. At EJ's house, they are eating eggs and bacon. EJ's dad is amazed at how calm he is. EJ wants to show his parents and sister what he can do instead of just telling them. The Pep Rally shows the students being excited. EJ is being announced as the new quarterback.
It's game time. We see the band pulling the football boosters in a chariot around the field. Butkus tells the team to show them who they are. If everyone does it, then the team will win. EJ gets his first throw in as a first down, and then throws deep to DJ Johnson, who catches the ball. EJ seems to be doing good and is able to make the throws. Montour makes a touchdown and gets the extra point. Score is 7-0. EJ did well in his first series of play. Ambridge comes back to score a touchdown. The extra point is good and the score is tied. Crockett is yelling at one of the defense guys who wasn't covering his area. Crockett says that the team has to beat Ambridge.
It is now in the second quarter. Ambridge throws down the field and appears to make a touchdown, but there is a flag on the play. The Ambridge coach goes out on the field to argue. it seems that it was an illegal forward pass and it is going to fourth down. Ambridge has to punt. EJ gets intercepted because DJ is not in position. As Crockett yells at DJ, he says that he doesn't care what the other team does, you keep running. EJ is really upset at throwing an interception and DiIanni tells him that it wasn't EJ's fault. Crockett keeps on trying to explain to DJ that you don't stop running and complaining because the quarterback is trying to throw you the damn ball. DJ said that the problem was that the defender grabbed his face mask and pulled him, so DJ stopped to look for a flag, and of course, there wasn't one. Crockett apologizes for yelling at DJ, but says that it is a lesson learned. The defense does its job of blocking a touchdown, but Ambridge makes a field goal. The score at halftime is Ambridge 10, Montour 7. EJ blames himself for the interception. Lou Cerro tells them to go out there and battle and get the other team to respect them. Neither side scores in the second half and there is some good rough and tumble football. DJ Johnson doesn't go back into play because he is abit sore with six minutes left in the game, but EJ goes in for him. Crockett tells EJ that he has to look at his man because you can't cover if you don't look at him. Crockett also tells DJ to suck it up and play with the pain. Ambridge turns over the ball with 25 seconds left in the game. EJ throws deep and misses. Bryce is knocked down and isn't moving. He is motionless. It looks like he was knocked out. The trainers rush to him, and his parents run over. The trainers tell Bryce to keep talking to them. He has neck pain and is out of it. They have Bryce wrapped up and are taking him to Allegheny General Hospital. It's now Montour's final shot. The ball is thrown to DJ, and he gets nowhere. Montour loses 10-7. It is hard for Crockett to understand how the team loses because they get the opportunities, they just don't seize them. Crockett feels sorry for Bryce because he was coming on all season. Butkus said that everyone wants to win, but only one team does win. Butkus thinks that the team has improved by leaps and bounds. Next week will be the season finale for the show.
Wednesday, October 26, 2005 -- Evening
Now Bound for Glory. Ellis Cannon is again talking about the Spartans. The Spartans will be playing Elizabeth Forward. I just noticed that the usual place where they are eating is JoJo's Place. Dick Butkus and Ray Crockett are eating their breakfast and discussing the team. Butkus said that he is feeling like he has to stop yelling at the team. Crockett said that he has to keep on yelling because that will get the results they need. Crockett lets Butkus know that Christian Wilson broke his leg playing Elizabeth Forward and that he and Butkus will have to work with Christian to get over his fears and know who Christian can block. Crockett thinks that the team is progressing. It is going from watching the film and thinking they suck to now watching the films and saying they are so close. Gianni Ricci is trying to get cleared to get back on the field since his ankle sprain a few weeks earlier. Ricci gets cleared by his trainer. The team is now heading out on the field to practice. Crockett really seems to know the guys too. Joe Kulik, who is a cornerback on the team, talks about how they have to play to their fullest potential. Crockett thinks that Chrisitian is really not doing very good at blocking. It seems he does not work 100% when he is blocking, and in the previous game it resulted in a quarterback sack. Crockett keeps on telling Christian that he has to hit the guy. Christian says to Morgan Singletary that he doesn't know how Crockett wants Christian to hit guys, and Morgan says "not like a pussy". The Riccis go to the Prima Donna to celebrate the ankle healing.
Three days before the game. Lou Cerro tells everyone that Joe Kulik had heart attack symptoms, and that they are going to try to fix his problem with drugs, but it may need open heart surgery. Crockett tells Butkus that Joe fainted the previous day and had to go to the hospital. It seems that earlier in the morning, Joe felt like he was having a heart attack and came in to get checked out and is now in the hospital with an IV. We see Joe in the hospital and his father Joe Sr. crying. His father tells him to keep the faith and that he might still have a chance to play. Crockett said that they are one player away from making a positive change. Crockett plays with Michael Robinson and tells him that he will have to go back to the bench. Robinson is a good player so he gets to play. Mike Maradin was surprised that he was pulled because he knew that he wasn't playing well, but he thought that he could come back and play harder. His father thinks that Maradin needs to be somewhere playing on defense. His mother says that he can't let it bother him. The father says that they have to take the gloves off and play football. As the father says, everyone wants to look pretty out there.
Back at the hospital (Allegheny General Hospital). The doctor says that it was just an air sack around the chest cavity, and that he will be able to go home and will be okay. Boy, it went from such a bad diagnosis to something alot nicer. Back at practice and Ricci says that he is okay with his ankle. Kulik comes back to pracice on Wednesday. They were going to dedicate the game Kulik. Joe can have light practice today and full pads the next day. Crockett said that when you think you are a star like Christian does, you tend to not give you all. Christian is acting the star instead of putting in the effort. Crockett said that a 140 pound guy should not be able to push around someone 185 pounds. Lou Cerro asks Crockett and Butkus to dinner. Crockett said that Christian is mad at him because Crockett is making Christian work. Christian's dad asks him how he feels about playing Elizabeth Forward with the break last year. His mom says that she worries everytime he plays since he broke his leg. His mom thinks that Christian will take the easy road unless he is challenged. She does know her son.
The day before the game, Ricci's mom is asking him what he will be doing, and if he is worried about getting hurt or reinjured. Ricci says you can't worry about getting hurt or you will get hurt. Butkus goes to the barbershop to get his haircut. Butkus is farting throughout the hair cut, or pretending to. It seems that he has a farting gadget and wanted to see how everyone would react. What a cutup! Someone from UPMC Sports Medicine comes in to talk to them. The players all say that Christian isn't giving his all for the team. They are told that they all have to visual stuff before the game. Christian says, why should I visualize making three touchdowns, because if I don't it was wasted. Butkus bonds with the players by telling them how he used to tackle in the past. Butkus tells them that success is a journey, not a destination. Back at the Alumni Bar, the Kennedy Township Fireman's Hall, they are talking about reports in the local papers. The one old man is totally confused about who is playing in the next game.
On game day, the cheerleaders made snacks for the football players and give it to them when they are in class. Nick DiIanni jumps into this snack pack. Anthony Pastin would love to make the playoffs. Morgan Singletary said that they worked hard to beat Elizabeth Forward, and it will be a set back if they lose. We see the kids in class, and alot of the players are sleeping in class. DiIanni appears to be sleeping in a chemistry class while his teacher says that DiIanni is concentrating. Butkus gives them a pep talk and tells theme they have to take a step forward and win this game. The game starts, and Ricci says that ran really hard and wound up hurting his leg more. Ricci starts crying, but Butkus tells him to not think about it, that he needs to get better because they have the whole season. Joe Kulik gets the first interception of the game. Amazing considering that he was ill earlier. Christian Wilson then fumbles the ball because he is worried about "breaking his wrist". Elizabeth Forward scores first and leads 7-0. Crockett talks to Robinson about what he needs to do. DiIanni is intercepted, and Elizabeth Forward scores again. 14-0. The air is coming out of the Montour balloon rather quickly. The offensive line appears to have problems, and DiIanni isn't on top of his game. The Montour defense recovers a fumble. Crockette gives them a play, but DJ just missed the ball. Montour gets a touchdown with DiIanni running the ball in. Score is now 14-7. Half time. Dan Iorio (Meat's dad) said that Montour should be beating them handily and isn't. Lou Cerro tries to talk them into not having such long faces. Morgan Singletary said that they all need to put their all in and play their best. Crockett takes DJ aside and tells him that he has to play with confidence.
The second half starts with Christian fumbling again. Crockett tells Christian that he has to calm down. Christian is still trying to say that he is afraid that he is going to break his hand. He needs to get past that because he is ruining the teams chances. Montour recovers on another fumble though to only turn it over again. It seems that Nick DiIanni is saying that he jammed his shoulder (at least the trainer is saying that). DiIanni's father thinks he needs to just go back into the game. Elizabeth Forward scores again. 12-7. DiIanni it appears can't throw, so he hands the ball to Christian who runs the ball in for a touchdown. They miss the extra point. It seems that they try to kick the extra point without a kicking tee and that's why they miss the point. Kulik gets a personal foul penalty by hitting a guy that was down. Montour has to make a play with a minute left in the game and a score of 21-13. The game is over and Montour lost. Butkus said that only a few guys are giving a strong effort and they never everybody to give it and they aren't. Meanwhile Pastin seems to be having a problem with DJ and starts yelling in DJ's face that he shouldn't just give up on the team. DJ calls Pastin outside and they go off to talk over their differences and cry and hug. Crockett seems like a nice guy and goes around trying to encourage and comfort the kids, patting shoulders and telling them that they are getting better.
Friday, October 21, 2005 -- Late Evening
The Montour Spartans lost again tonight, and finish the season just as they did last year with a 1-8 record. It seems that Dick Butkus did return for tonight's game. It seems that what happened is that ESPN did not have the money for more than eight weeks, and just hoped that the show would be popular and generate some money. However, that was not to be. The kids never really bonded with Butkus, basically because Butkus did nothing to endear himself to the team. Ray Crockett, however, was liked by the team. Crockett actually interacted with the players and tried to give them information that would help them be better players.
Tuesday, October 18, 2005 -- Evening
Bound for Glory was on next. The show started with Ellis Cannon again. Montour will be facing their biggest rivals and close neighbors, Moon Township. Ray Crockett and Dick Butkus meet at the restaurant again. Crockett says that they have to start from scratch and concentrate one week at a time. Crockett said that the team can't afford to get down. Butkus said that he has to look at it as glasses half full. Crockett actually seems to be much better at this whole coaching thing than Butkus does. As Crockett said, when you lose, everything is bad. Even the coffee is cold. Meat Iorio said that he used to be a bad boy, but he is being better now. His dad said that whatever he tells Meat goes in one ear and out the other. Meat says that the team is more intense because they have to prove that they are a good team. Butkus said that he didn't like what he saw on defense and is going to chance things around. Butkus claims that he told Meat that he is now going to be nose guard or not play. It seems that nose guard doesn't do alot of thinking. Lou Cerro was involved in these discussions. Butkus tells the kids to look at the glass as half full. Butkus says he wants a 5-3 defense. The kids start practicing. The defensive coordinator went from 5-3 back to the zone defense. Butkus damns the defensive coordinator. The defensive coordinator wanted to go to his old style. Then Butkus starts fighting with one of the coaches and swearing. Another assistant comes up and says you can't do this in front of the kids, and the one assistant says that he's been coaching for high school football from some years. Butkus has never coached. Morgan Singletary walks away from the practice because as he said, this is how it was last year. Meanwhile the other kids watch the mostly bleeped out argument.
Three days before the game. DJ was talking about how Morgan throwing his helmet down and walking away did not show alot of character for the captain of the team. Morgan knew that it was a bad decision, but he was so frustrated at the time that he didn't care. Lou Cerro addressed the issue. Butkus said that he apologized to Joe the assistant coach, and Joe said that they just butted heads. Butkus said they are family, and need to move on. Morgan also apologizes for leaving practice and says that he was upset. Crockett said that he's not upset about what happened because this is what happens when people really care. Crockett tells them to channel their aggression in the right direction to win. Crockett has everyone give a group hug and show the love. It's then back to practice. Christian Wilson says that Moon is the biggest rivalry. Nick DiIanni said that Montour used to be the powerhouse, but not anymore. The players really hate Moon. The thing that they don't let you know is that Moon and Montour are in close proximity. We then go to Moon's field. They have wno their first three games and haven't had a losing season in a decade. They don't believe in second best. The players are at Quaker State and Lube in Robinson. Moon and Peters Township are there. Some guy from Peters Township comes up to trash talk. Peters goes outside and want to fight. Then one of the Moon guys comes up and wants to fight too. The tensions seem to be rising. The Montour guys are scared because the Moon and Peters Township guys are out there asking for a fight. Moon left and there was no fight.
The day before the game, Butkus is talking about getting penetration for the line. Meat is being told that he is being a nose guard. Meat is saying that they are not sure about Moon because they haven't won against Moon for awhile. Butkus thinks that they has a good week of practice and that they can go out there and play. Butkus thinks that it's looking good for Montour against Moon. The mothers going to KFC and have a nice picnic for the kids at Clever Park. One mom says that she knows that the team can win, and that both teams are new. Butkus shows up at the "Alumni Bar" aka the Fireman's Club. The guys comment on Butkus' professional career. Meat's dad says that he thinks nose guard is perfect for his son. Butkus listens to the fathers talk. The Montour team finds a Moon flag, spray paint a message on it, and take it to Moon. The kids go to Moon School, and find a spot right in front of the entrance for the flag.
It's now game day. The kids at Moon say that the Montour kids think they are something, but Tiger pride will win in the end. It seems that Moon has never lost a conference game on their field since it was dedicated. Butkus said to go crazy and nuts and to just hit the other team whenever they can. It's time for the game. Morgan gives the team a pep talk to show Moon that they mean business and want to walk off with their heads held high. Montour recovers the onside kick. DiIanni throws a couple of incompletions. Then he runs with the ball and is just short of the down. Montour scores with a field goal on the opening drive. Score is 3-0. The Moon guy returns the ball for 43 yards after bouncing off alot of Montour's defenders. The team starts to argue on the field and Morgan tells them to stop arguing. Moon scores a touchdown and the extra point is good. Moon is ahead now 7-3. Butkus said that the guys are there and just not making the plays. Moon recovers a fumble. Moon makes another touchdown. They score the extra point, and it is Moon 14, Montour 3. The referees call the game for abit because of lightening. Crockett said that the lightening destroyed Moon's momentum. The game was postponed till the next day. Butkus said that he thought that this was happening for a reason and that they could make some adjustments leaving that night.
Back at the Montour school, we find out that Moon spray painted all over the Montour school. Some of the families are in Rockerfeller Grille. Meat's dad is willing to pay for paint for the team. Christian's dad tells the teammembers to have pride. DiIanni's father tells his son to play smart and hard. He tells his son that he has to play like he wants to win and that it is the most important thing in the world. The father tells his son that he should play the game not because his dad likes the game, but because Nick wants to win. His dad tells him that he has the opportunity to make this a game. His dad says that he needs to move beyond being a mediocre quarterback. His father says that he is tired of losing, it's not fun. He tells his son that he doesn't realize what he has, to seize the moment because it's staring him in the face. Crockett said that the defensive ends weren't playing, so there were changes and Maradin and Moohah are pulled out and new people are put in. Crockett thinks without the delay the change would not have happened. It's now time for the conclusion of the game. Montour seems to be getting better at stopping the offensive rush. The half is over with the score still at 14-3. Butkus said that he thought that the team acted like they could win. Morgan said that they came out to show them they were ready to play. Morgan was talking with his arms flexed and kissed his biceps at one point. Weird. The game is back on. Moon fumbles and Montour recovers. DiIanni throws a touchdown pass to DJ. It's now 14-10. Moon is starting to look distraught. Montour was totally different from Friday night to Saturday night.
Back to the top of the third quarter. Montour is still giving Moon a hard time and stopping the forward movement. Christian Wilson is doing a good job running the ball. Iorio breaks a couple of tackles and runs in the ball for a touchdown. Montour is now ahead 17-14. The Moon fans are quiet The bad thing happens: Moon makes a punt return for a touchdown. Moon is now ahead 21-17. Morgan Singletary tries to talk the team into getting the momentum back. Christian is stopped at the five yard line, then loses five yards on a run, and then DiIanni throws an incompletion, and then is sacked. Welch goes for a 37 yard field goal and is just short. You can see the team deflate. There is 5:40 left in the game. DiIanni's father watches without happiness. 3:06 in the game, and Moon has the ball. Less than a minute and Moon still has the ball. Christian's dad is also unhappy and angry. Moon wins: 21-17. Larry DiIanni said that the team did make progress, but they just didn't come out on top. Butkus said that the team is starting to believe in themselves. Morgan says that they are showing improvement, and that they want to win and are going to win.
Saturday, October 15, 2005 -- After Midnight
Poor Montour!. They lost again this evening to the Blackhawk Cougars. The final score was 47-16. Right now, they only have one win in the season and one more game to play. If they lose their last game of the season, they will match their record of last year of 1-8.
Thursday, October 13, 2005 -- Evening
Interesting news. Dick Butkus has left the Montour Spartans even though there are two games left in the season. It seems that he was frustrated with the fact that the team was losing and did not make the WPIAL playoffs. It seemed that Butkus only signed on for eight weeks so it really isn't too surprising to hear that he didn't stay on. ESPN has left a skeleton crew behind to film the remaining games. I wonder how ESPN is going to account for all of this. The remaining shows will have to have some drama because of the fact that Montour has had another major losing seaaon.
Wednesday, October 12, 2005 -- Evening
Now for Bound for Glory. The show starts with Ellis Cannon talking about the Montour team on his radio show. He must be getting paid a pretty penny from ESPN. Dick Butkus and Ray Crockett are listening to the show as they travel to a local eatery. This week's upcoming game is against Hopewell and is also Homecoming. It is four days before the game, and Crockett is saying that Hopewell is different from the team they just beat because Hopewell is a bigger and more physical team. Crockett thinks that this upcoming game will be a crucial game. Crockett thinks that its great to have Christian back. Crockett then mocks Morgan by calling him Headache, and says they need to figure out what is going on with Headache. The cheerleaders are making banners for Homecoming game. The cheerleaders are believing and thinking the team can win the Homecoming game. They must be missing the practices. They are talking about the voting for Homecoming King and Queen. Crockett said that if you win, your status rises. I think he is trying to pump up the boys. We then see the players practicing. Butkus tells them to forget about the last win. Lou Cerro lets Butkus know that it has been four or five years since Montour last beat Hopewell. Butkus tells them that they have to score first and to get sharp because now they are down to business. it's not time for the film session to see how Hopewell has been doing. DJ talks about how big the line is and how talented they are. It seems that the last time they played Hopewell, they were just run over. Morgan Singletary says that its going to be a real intense game.
Break is over, Anthony Pastin is shown with his grandfather who has always been around football, either playing or coaching for his whole life. The grandfather is showing Anthony his pictures. It seems that the grandfather has been lonely since the grandmother died last year. The team is working out on the track and practicing sprints and dashes. Then we see the players working out in the weight room. As Lou Cerro says, their plan is to get kids out of study hall during the day and put them in the weight room to work out. The plan is to be more regimented. Lou Cerro goes looking around and sees a few members on the team just walking around and not working out. It seems that the players are just lazy and not really that motivated. They have shabby excuses like forgetting clothes or wanting early times. Poor Lou Cerro. They have this new, expensive weight room and the kids are just not interested. We see the practice and Crockett yells out that they have to find someone out there who wants to play. He thinks that the players are thinking too much about their last win and thinking they are better than they are. Crockett tells one of them that he is a running back and should run. The team looks awful in practice. Meanwhile at the Singletary household, Morgan is finding out that he has another doctor's appointment. He says that he hasn't had headaches since the previous Saturday.
It's now two days before Homecoming and Morgan is at the Center for Sports Medicine. The doctor tells him that when Morgan was cleared he should report his symptoms and it means that his vulnerbility could be high. The doctor thinks that he should be checked out. The doctor says that the hit in the third quarter was probably a concussion type injury but the headache went away. The doctor says if that continues, he can play on Friday. The Homecoming Court had Anthony Pastin and Morgan Singletary. Nick DiIanni and Dane Kaczynski also made the Court. We see the players kissing their girlfriends at the end of the school day, and it looks like Christian has a cute blonde girlfriend. Anthony says that they really have to study and do what they can against Hopewell. Butkus says that the team has to concentrate and they can't afford any screwing around. we then see some of the players making shadow creatures while others screw up in the practice. The team comes across as idle, lazy, immature, rich kids. Butkus talks to the team and says that he hopes that the team doesn't forget about the game with all the Homecoming stuff going on.
Pep rally time. There were alot of festivities with the pep rally. It is now one day before the game. The team is practicing, and Crockett tells Christian to wrap his hand so it doesn't get injured again. Nick DiIanni said that he likes talking to Crockett and thinks that he is a good coach. Crockett thinks that the practice went pretty well. Hopewell will also be a conference game. Butkus seems to wish that the kids would not be involved in Homecoming, but they are kids and easily distracted. DiIanni went over to Marina Matteo's house to give her three of his jerseys. It seems that the tradition is to give a girl that you "talk to" your jersey so she can wear it to the game. Of the three one of them was dirty, but Marina doesn't think it signifies anything about their relationship. Marina is a junior and a very cute girl. At the Montour Fireman's Club (which they keep on referring to as the Montour Alumni Bar) the adults are talking about the upcoming game. At the Homecoming Bonfireall the players are there partying. Anthony Pastin said that it was good to feel the energy of the other students. The team has been spending alot of time during the week on Homecoming festivities and think they should have concentrated on the game.
It's game day. Christian is sleeping and not getting up easily. Christian is not really talking much to him mom who is asking him about the game. His mom tells him that he needs to wake up. We see folks tailgating before the game. Anthony Pastin's grandfather comes to the game too. Nick DiIanni said that he is zoned out and just concentrating on the game. Christian thinks that they will beat Hopewell. The team is quiet and thinking and trying to get in the zone before the game. Butkus welcomes everyone to the game and wants to make the alumni proud of their team. We find out that Energizer is going to give a new scoreboard to the team so they will remember to keep going and going. Crockett tells them that all the hard work comes down to this moment. The court is being introduced on the field. Morgan appears to be captain of the football and the baseball team. The game starts. Christian is being given the ball, and just running into a wall of players. Montour intercepts the ball. Things are looking good so far, and Montour is second and goal. christian makes a touchdown and Montour leads by six points and the extra point is good. Montour does score and is up early by 7-0. Crockett thinks that is good, and we go to commercial break with Crockett and Butkus having a grand old time and thinking they can do positive things against Hopewell.
Now it is back from the break. Second quarter starts with the score still 7-0. Hopewell has a huge run and scores a touchdown and extra point. Score is tied. Crockett looks glum on the sidelines. Montour is starting to look like they do in practice with incompletions. Hopewell scores again and takes the lead. It's not 7-14. Montour is intercepted. It seems that DiIanni threw it away to someone who wasn't there from the team. Diianni said that someone should have been there, but he wasn't there. Crockett is trying to calm down DiIanni after yelling at him for throwing the ball when no one from his team is there. Hopewell has another touchdown. Hopewell 21, Montour 7 at half time. Cerro tells them that they are only down two touchdowns, and they shouldn't get into this thinking that this is just typical Montour and they can't do better. Cerro says that they need to stop pointing fingers on the sideline and to remember that they are a team. Time for second half. Hopewell scores again and is ahead 27-7. DiIanni throws to no one again, and then throws an interception that is returned for a touchdown. Score is now 33-7. Crockett says that the players on the team have a bullshit attitude--a loser's attitude. The game ends with Hopewell winning 47-15. Meat's dad, Dan Iorio, said that they looked terrible, and that they looked like little kids out there who forgot what to do, and he said that he wasn't impressed with anyone. As he said, it's the same thing all over again. Butkus in the locker room. He said that he doesn't know where to begin and is really pissed. He tells them that if they don't want to play, then they shouldn't come back. Butkus tells them that they blew the whole weekend. I think that he wants them to not party but work this weekend. He tells the team that they should play Nintendo because they are wasting people's time if they don't want to play. He says that if they don't want to be there to show up at 8:30 in the morning. It seems that they just gave up when they started to lose.
Tuesday, October 11, 2005 -- Afternoon
Tonight will be the next episode of Bound for Glory. I'm not sure if I will stay up to watch it so look for the synopsis on Wednesday evening. I do know that Montour is having another very bad year. The team lost again this past Friday, and have a 1-6 record. Obviously, they want to rival last year's 1-8.
Tuesday, October 4, 2005 -- Late Evening
Tonight was the third episode of Bound for Glory. The show starts with the scene in the Montour Alumni Bar after the losing game. All the guys can see the faults. We have Elis Canon talking about the show and Dick Butkus as if he was the real coach. They show a portion of a newspaper article that mentions that Butkus provides drama but no win. Butkus and Ray Crockett think that they need to get Morgan back from his concussion. The next bit of the show takes us to the team watching the film of the previous game. Butkus and Crockett appear to be giving direction, but we do get a clip of Lou Cerro talking to the team. He's really the coach. The capitain of the team is really mocked and told that it is embarrassing that he didn't tackle anyone. Meanwhile others yell that they must lose losing. Crockett asks how they were 1-8 last year--if the other team forfeited the game. Crockett also tells one team member that he should be embarrassed playing with a bunch of girls. Meanwhile one father asks crockett why they are being so hard on the kids because they are playing well. Crockett says it's not playing well, it's winning. They should not accept losing, period. Morgan is now on his way to the Sports Medicine Center. Morgan is clear to go on to play in the coming week. It is team picture day. Morgan tells the coach that he can run today, light contact the next day, and if there are no headaches he is cleared to play. Right now, Morgan said that he is filling good and had his last headache on Tuesday. Morgan is supposed to be a good team leader and motivator.
After the commercial break, we see Abbey Schram. She says that cheering for a losing team has not been fun. As she said though, at least the last game that they lost was close. Molly Broker talks about how the cheerleaders won two national championships. All the girls admit that it really does suck to cheer for such a loser team. Morgan says that he needs to work to get into shape beause he hasn't been working out for the past two weeks. Butkus asks one of the real coaches how Morgan is doing. then we go back to cheerleader practice. It seems that the Miami Heat cheerleaders are there to meet with the girls. They showed up to choreograph a routine for the girls for the assembly that will be held before the game. Actually there are only three girls and the choreographer. So they begin an assessment of the girls and where they are at in their abilities. It seems that the cheerleaders are good. Next we see Christian getting his cast off and stitches out. He will have two splints. The one for play is more padded to keep his arm safe. Out on the practice field, Christian seems unable to catch the ball with the cast. When he runs he is okay because his right hand is fine, it's the left hand that is in the cast. Everyone thinks that he is the best running back the team has seen. Meanwhile Crockett is on the sidelines saying that with Christian, you never know what you will get.
It is finally back to school for all the students. Morgan says that he is not looking forward to going back to school and learning. Morgan tells Coach Cerro how his head hurts from learning. Cerro tells him not to have a headache on Friday. We then see the kids in their various classes. Crockett and Butkus are talking about what to do with the players on the team as if they really have a say in how things work. Butkus says that Crockett has to take over defensive backs and running backs because one of the defensive coaches has been suspended for racial slurs in the previous game against the other team. Butkus says that it is a good opportunity for Crockette. We then see all the trophies that the cheerleaders have. it seems their trophies get stuffed into a closet in the basement. No one really seems to care that they have a really good cheerleading squad and there is no appreciation for the team. The cheerleaders are preparing for the pep squad with the Miami Heat cheerleaders. Abby tells us how cheerleading is a physical sport. Morgan is told that if he has a headache, he should be careful because there's no reason to do anything stupid and compromise the whole season. Butkus hopes that he had eleven Morgan Singletary's. Butkus talks to the kids about the parents complaining to him about being too rough on the kids. Butkus says that he doesn't care because his whole point is that the team should be winning.
After the break, DJ says that he is really excited and hopes to bring back the first win of the year. We hear that the students llike to attend the pep rallys to just get out of their classes. The cheerleaders practice their routine outside before going in to the pep rally. Then we hear Butkus announced as the head coach of the team. Butkus then announces the players to the audience. Butkus then mentions the cheerleaders and their success and hope the football teams does as well as the cheerleaders. They then perform their routine, and it's pretty good. The students don't seem very excited but the Miami Heat choreographer talks about the three championships that the cheerleaders won. Morgan then says that he wants to thank the cheerleaders for going to every game and staying for the whole game. Joe Findley the school superintendent says that starting that day the cheerleaders trophies will be on display for the first time in years. So the cheerleaders are finally being recognized.
The team is riding on the bus to their next game which is in the middle of the state. The officials will not let Christian play without a doctor's note because of the cast. They tell Lou Cerro who then tries to locate the doctor's excuse. He finds the secretary and she says that it is on the desk. Cerro gets the Athletic Director to get someone into the building and fax the doctor's note to them. Butkus talks to the team again. You can see Cerro in the background dressed in a shirt and tie and acting like the real coach while Butkus does his play acting. Christian is getting ready for the game, while someone is trying to get the note. Finally they do get the note and Christian is cleared to play. The game starts. DiIanni gets sacked in one of the first plays, and then scrambles but doesn't make the yards. Albert Gallatin scores first and the score is 6-0. Albert Gallatin isn't able to get the extra point due to a bad snap. christian scores a touchdown. The extra point is good, and the score is 7-6 with Montour winning. A long pass to DJ Johnson results in another touchdown. Score is 14-7. Montour intercepts the ball. Gallatin intercepts the ball right back. It seems that DiIanni threw to the wrong side. Gallatin scores and goes for two points. They are successful and the score is tied 14-14 with 8:58 in the half. The Montour team got deflated after the interception.
After the break, we come back to Christian scoring another touchdown. The score is 21-14. Meanwhile Morgan is tackling away. There is a fumble and Montour recovers. Christian runs the ball in for another touchdown. Score is now 28-14. The team goes back to the field after the half with Butkus telling them not to count on their laurels just yet. Morgan takes a hard hit and is out of the game while the athletic trainer checks out Morgan who now has a headache. Ryan Welsh no attempts a 40 yard field goal and makes it. The score is now 31-14. DJ says it is the best feeling on the sidelines because they are up 20 points. Montour scores again. The final is 38-14. Montour has the first win, and at this point is 1-1 for the season. The team is really happy over the win. Butkus says whatever you have to do to have the right mind set you have to do.
Saturday, October 1, 2005 -- Afternoon
The Montour Spartans aren't doing too well either. They lost last night. That means that so far they only have one win and five losses. This really has to look bad for ESPN's experiment, and it makes you wonder if Lou Cerro would have done a better job without all the distractions of the filming of the series. The parents should not be happy about this turn of events.
Wednesday, September 28, 2005 -- Evening
Last night was the second episode of Bound for Glory. The show starts with Ellis Cannon talking about Montour's opening game for the season. Five days before the game, Ray Crockett and Dick Butkus meet to discuss the plans for the game. I'm not sure where they met to talk because the restaurant did not look familiar. Crockett and Butkus were talking about who could step up for the team, and they mention DJ. Meanwhile Morgan Singletary is talking about going to see the doctor and get cleared to play again. He has to have clearance since he had the concussion. He mentions that he opened a fortune cookie with no fortune and that can't be good. Back at the field, Butkus brought in a drill sargent from the US Army. Butkus thinks that it will get the team into great shape. I think that it is just so much phony baloney for the television cameras. What we see is the drill sargent standing on the sidelines talking to Butkus talking about what he would like the kids to do. Meanwhile the kids aren't even listening. I don't think that the drill sargent actually interacted with the kids. I think it was just more show. There is a kid nicknamed "Meat" who really seems to think it is funny. The kicker for the team is actually pretty good, and Crockett calls him the secret weapon. Derrick Johnson (DJ) said that Crockett is always there to give advice. It seems that Morgan fails his test to play. He couldn't complete the test and got a headache doing it. So he is out for another week.
Three days before the game we see Gianni Ricci talking about how Montour is being talked about in the local paper and how Gianni is being mentioned as a possible lineman. It seems that he keeps on letting the colleges know how hs is doing. The drill sargent is back on the sidelines on the field. Crockett says that he has his eye on Gianni because he thinks that the kid will be stepping up and doing some things on the field. We then see Butkus giving his pep talk. They did edit this show well. You wouldn't think that Butkus is not actually coaching. It is just talk. The booster club at Montour paid for the high school locker room. It is a really nice one and not like the usual high school locker room. Butkus is telling the team that they won't be moving into the locker room until they earn it. DJ looks like he lives in a house that isn't as upscale as some of the others. It seems that he was adopted four years ago by the family that he lives with. He says that his parents treat him like he is one of their kids and that he has lived in the house his whole life. DJ thinks he will get alot of time on the field in the next game. He hopes that the hard work pays off.
After the break, we see the team doing jumping jacks in their uniforms. Ben Roethlisberger shows up to motive the kids. Butkus slaughters Roethlisberger's name. Roethlisberger showed up to practice with this kids. From what I hear in the local papers, Roethlisberger just showed up for abit, threw the ball alittle and left. We see him watching the kids and appearing to give the kids some techniques. we heard from DiIanni, the quarterback for the team, how Roethlisberger gave him some good tips. Crockett said that a professional player never came to his school and coached him. The cheerleaders are practicing in the gym when one runs in and says that Roethlisberger is there. All the girls squeal and run to watch him on the field. The personal trainer who is a woman comes to yell at the girls because they are watching and squealing. I would have told her to get lost. What could they really do? Butkus and Crockett drive over to talk to DJ at his house. They want to impress on him that he has a great opportunity to become a star and to carry the load. Crockett wants DJ to do a little bit of anything. It seems that DJ got at least 8 yards every time he touched the ball. It seems that the quarterback DiIanni has his favorites and DJ isn't one of them. So DJ doesn't get the ball very often. So the duo show up at Nick DiIanni's house to impress on DiIanni that he should get the ball to DJ more often. DiIanni said that he wants to be a leader, which Butkus says he hasn't seen.
The kids are in the gym the day before the game. Nick DiIanni said that the pressure is on. The cheerleaders go to DiIanni's to decorate his yard. It seems they do this for all the senior players. Ryan Welsh is told by the one fat cheerleader that he really isn't a football player. The fat girl is a talker though, and the other girls seem shyer. We see the fathers of four of the guys on the team at a local bar downing a few and hoping for a good year. Crockett says that DiIanni has to throw to DJ or they won't win. As Crockett said, it's a team sport. He hasn't seen a quarterback yet who can throw the ball to himself and catch it. Butkus tries to talk to Morgan, but doesn't seem to know what to say. Crockett tells them that since the team had a great practice for two days, they can use the locker room. Crockett said that it should happen before the first game. It seems that they got alot of new stuff, including new uniforms from Reebok. Butkus tells them not only should they look like champions, they should play like champions. Butkus says who cares about Chartiers Valley or whatever it is called. Butkus doesn't know who the opponents are and obviously doesn't hide it.
Montour travels to Chartiers Valley for the Friday night game. It's a rainy evening at the end of August. The team is hoping for a win. The rain is pouring down. Butkus tells the kids to go out and have fun and that the byproduct will be that they will be winners. Butkus asks everyone to bow their heads and pray in their own way, and then talks some about God and winning and to have fun. chartiers Valley is favored to win. We hear a phony newscast because everyone here knows that Lou Cerro is coach. he has the headset on in the film--not Butkus. DiIanni misses a throwing opportunity because he wasn't looking down field. He runs with the ball, and the team can't get a first down. The Chartiers Valley Colts run down the field and score. The kick was no good, and the score was 6-0. Montour's defense has been doing well, but not the offense. It seems that DiIanni again doesn't throw to DJ. Then DJ throws an interception which might be due to the rain. With 52 seconds left in the half, Anthony Pastin intercepts the ball and runs it in for a touchdown. Score at the half is 7-6 with Montour leading. It seems that in high school, they play 12 minutes quarters, so there is 24 minutes left to play. This is the first time in a while though that the team went to the locker room at half time without being 20 some points behind.
Ryan Welsh kicks off the ball, and then is the only one who brings down the punt returner. chartiers Valley then misses a field goal attempt. DiIanni finally throws to DJ who gets them some yardage. DiIanni winds up getting hit and fumbled while he tries to continue his run. Ryan Welsh misses a field goal attempt. Chartiers Valley scores a touchdown when a runner breaks through the line and goes all the way down the field. They do a two point conversion and lead 14-7. Ricci is down and appears to have hurt his leg and is helped off the field. Ricci tells them to leave him alone and walks off the field. It doesn't look like it is broken or serious because Ricci can wiggle his toes. Montour now tries to do something with 2:19 left in the game. DiIanni makes a long throw to DJ who catches the ball. The team is close to the end zone, and winds up getting sacked twice. Montour tried a quarterback fake, but it didn't work. The final play was an incomplete throw to DJ. Chartiers Valley then runs out the clock. Montour lost by a score of 14-7. Butkus said that losing has become a habit with the team, but they have to strap it up and break the pattern. And the show ends.
I just checked on Montour's statistics so far for the year, and they have 1 win, 4 losses. Has to suck if you are Butkus and ESPN. But since ESPN is using the team for drama, they should get plenty of it.
Thursday, September 22, 2005 -- Afternoon
Some of the local sportscasters have issues with the way things are being presented on the Bound for Glory. The main issue is that Dick Butkus is being presented as the coach on the show, but in real life it is Lou Cerro. I know that they did this for the cameras, and folks outside of Pittsburgh will only watch because Butkus is on the show. I think that the show is hilarious. I'm not sure if that is the way that it is meant to be, but to see Butkus go off on one of his stupid tirades is just hilarious. There's Butkus saying that the 15 years old should be playing hurt. Come on, they are only 15! Do you want them to ruin their bodies now so they never make it to college or to the professionals? I guess that Butkus wouldn't mind that. I think that the kids from Montour aren't necessarily hoping to be the next biggest star. They are just hoping for a scholarship that will pay for college.
Wednesday, September 21, 2005 -- Evening
I watched the debut episode of Bound for Glory. It is set in the Montour School District which is a area southwest of Pittsburgh. It is not too far from the Pittsburgh Airport, and the homes are usually nicer ones with more land around them than you would find in the city. We see Dick Butkus driving into town with a trailer listening to a radio show with Ellis Cannon talking about Dick Butkus coming to town. We then see some guys in the Kennedy Township Fireman's Club sitting at the bar talking about the Montour football team. We hear that football is the sport in this part of the country (southwest Pennsylvania) and that the team hasn't had a winning season since 1988, and was 1 in 8 last year. We then see some of the yuppie kids sitting outside on the family deck with the nice yard behind them talking with their dad about how great it will be to have Dick Butkus as the new head coach. The kids and that environment that they live it reminds me very much of the well to do middle class family that you see in movies. That is how that part of town is. The majority of kids are the team are white, with one kid who is half black (his mother is white). If you went five miles away to McKees Rocks, you would see a different picture. There you would find more black children in the schools and on the sports teams. There are also three areas that are lower income, and all three are scary places to find yourself in. The show takes us to the Montour Football Boosters Picnic where one of the fathers was telling the kids to eat up because they were skin and bones. We hear from some of the parents and boosters that they are looking forward to a winning season at Montour. It was one of the better football programs in the 50s and 60s. We hear from some of the players that last year was a train wreck and embarrassing. This is supposed to be the turn around year. Now a scene right out of American Pie with a pool party in the backyard of one of the players. We have the typical high school jocks prancing around the pool with scantily clad buxom teenage girls embracing each other or flirting with the want-to-be heroes. One of the players believes that this year they will make the playoffs and they keep on saying that they can guarantee it. It seems that at least one of the players is intimidated at the thought of Butkus coming to town. He says that he is coming to Montour because he is getting the kids at the beginning of their football careers that he is hoping to mold them and get them to build alittle character. One thing to note is that the homes and rooms of the football players are very nice. They obviously have alot of priviledge. They just talk like ghetto kids. We then get to meet the only black player, Christian Wilson. He's a running back for the team and has been playing since he was 7. He broke his leg last year, and his mom really doesn't want him to go back to football. Christian wound up breaking his leg in a football game. Dick Butkus shows up for the coaching meeting. Poor Lou Cerro introduces Dick Butkus. Butkus gives them the pep talk while the students sort of look dazed. I don't think some of them are listening. Now it is time for team practice. The team sucks. They play like girls, and can't catch the ball. I've seen some better pee-wee league teams. Butkus asked them if they knew why they were doing this because they were pancakes with no motivation and no urge to really win.
After the break, it's the morning of the first scrimmage (this was this past August). We get to see a father (DiAnni) who used to be a coach and assistant coach and now has both of his sons on the team. Butkus says that he was dealt a team with no motivation and not alot of depth and that he just has to drill it in and hope they get it in which case everyone will die of a heart attack. Morgan Singletary, one of the linebackers, says you don't want to hurt yourself in scrimmage, but you want to play. Christian Wilson is the premier running back. There is another black kid as a linebacker on the team. So it seems there are two in total on the team. In the scrimmage, the quarterback just sort of drops the ball and the other team falls on it. The quarterback can't throw and no one can catch. Butkus said that they forgot alot of the things that were drilled into them all week, and you have to wonder why. It seems 2-3 guys are doing the right thing, and 7-8 are missing their assignments. Butkus said they have to eliminate the mental mistakes. We see one of the players, Morgan Singletary, really get wacked in the head during a tackle, and it looked like a bad hit. We see the medical person there say that she thinks Morgan has a concussion. His parents take him to Children's Hospital here in Pittsburgh. The doctor says he has a concussion, and they take a head CT scan to see if he has any bleeding.
Dr. Singh comes in to see Morgan. The CT is fine. It seems that Dr. Singh is worried about him reinjuring his head and that he has to be out for a month. As she said, he has only one brain. The doctor tells him that he has to sit on the sidelines and watch, no practice. Morgan is upset about missing three games. Now Butkus is going to pick up a buddy from the airport to check out the team. The guy is Ray Crockett. Butkus is telling Crockett that no guy is standing out except for maybe Christian the running back and Morgan Singletary. We are now at week two of camp. Butkus introduces Crockett to the team and explains that he is there to make them tougher on the defense. Butkus asks if the players can look in the mirror and say that they gave 100%. Butkus says that he and Crockett don't want to be embarrassed to be associated with losers. Crockett then flashes his Super Bowl ring. After the pep talk, the team sucks and finds themselves unable to catch the ball. Crockett is telling them to sprint. Then shows the kids how they run and that is just how a wide receiver will run past them. Christian seems abit bored while he is doing his stuff. Butkus asks for fullback volunteers. No one volunteers so he grabs a kid (he calls him number 18) and tells him to do what the other kid did. Then he tells another kid to just go and run somewhere. It is hilarious becuase they really do suck. Christian is given tips on how to run and run around cones. During the practice with the spinning drill, Christian popped his finger, and the trainer said to go to the hospital. So a piece of bone was pulled off of Christian's bone and has to be operated on. Christian's thumb is grossly unstable according to the doctor and can move sideways. The doctor says that he won't play football for at least two months after the surgery, but Christian says he has two more years anyway.
After the break, Christian returns to the training facility and tells everyone that his thumb is broken and that he might be out for the season. Crockett can't believe it and keeps on saying no. Crockett didn't think it was a bad injury, and doesn't believe that it was that bad because it is just a thumb. As Crockett said, get it operated on now, and go back to play. Crockett sais that Christian has to be thinking if he should play football with a broken leg one year and broken thumb. One of the players said that with Christian injured that the season is over. Butkus starts yelling at the players, and Crockett is telling them they are terrible and they have to run. Butkus says to Cerro that he is about to lose it because he can't believe that the folks are claiming that the injuries are so serious. Butkus says that he doesn't care that the players are 15, they need to be running with the crutches. The funniest line was Butkus calling it Club Med and that the injured players were treating it like a social club, and they should just go off and play Nintendo. Butkus then tells the players that there is pain and there are injuries and they need to play with pain. He says that they don't think that the kids care, and that the coaches are trying to make them winners instead of periennial losers. He says even God can't coach them. Butkus says that the desire has to come from inside and that other teams can kick their ass. He says that kids in the ghetto know that it's their only way out to play the game. Those kids can't afford to go home and play Nintendo.
Another break down. The players gather around to talk and they agree that there is alot of soul searching to be done. Morgan said that he has to sit out with a concussion, but he is waiting to be back. Morgan said that he played through injuries in the past, and they need to do the same. Christian goes to his mom and says that he has to play whether the doctor agrees or not. Christian says that he has to play and his mom is trying to find out if "they" are saying it or he wants it. Christian then tells his dad that he has to play, and the father says that there are 40 other kids and Christian isn't the only one. The players say that Butkus yelling at them gave them motivation and pushed them. Someone does catch a ball. Christian's dad, Pierre, must be a cop because he has handcuffs on his belt. Christian's mom, Romi, and Christian decide that they need a second opinion. Butkus said that he is not going to let anyone let him be a loser, and that he has been dwelling on the negatives too much to give any credit to the positives. He tells them they are on the way to the playoffs. Christian goes to the Center of Sports Medicine with UPMC. The second opinion was to fix the hand now and that he could go back to the field in ten days with a good cast. Christian tells Cerro what is happening with the finger now. We hear Christian telling everyone he is getting surgery tomorrow and will be playing in two weeks. Butkus is not very promising though.
The final section of the show shows the morning of the final scrimmage. Christian is at the hospital getting his finger operated on. Christian's dad, Perry, said that the surgery went well, and if the doctor gives the okay, they will play. Butkus gives the team a prescrimmage pep talk. Butkus said that he is there to stop the mental problem of the team viewing themselves as losers. Montour was doing well, and then the other side scored. Butkus said that they didn't fold their tents like losers do. It seems that the progression of the team has been better but as Gianni Ricci, one of the players said, they still have a long way to go. Crockett keeps on telling them to run fast not jog. He also says that they are improving and learning how to play the game of football. Butkus said that you have to plant the seed in their heads that they can win. And so the show ends.
Wednesday, September 21, 2005 -- Afternoon
Yesterday was a busy day for me as I mentioned, and I had some difficulty in getting caught up with all the things that needed to be done. The first episode of Bound for Glory was on last night right after Big Brother. Unfortunately, I wasn't able to catch all of it, but I do have the show recorded and will give a full update on it this evening. The show looks like it is going to be an entertaining one for drama, but I don't know how much the kids will gain from it with football experience. You have to feel sorry for the coach that was just hired to take on the real full time duties of the team, Lou Cerro. He is one of the better high school coaches, and has to take a back seat to the drama of Dick Butkus on the show. From what I hear in real life, Cerro takes a more active role. You would have to hope so!
Saturday, August 27, 2005 -- Morning
For the other local reality series Bound for Glory, Montour had its first football game last night, and lost to Chartiers Valley. The final score was 14-7. The Montour team's only score was an interception that was run in for a touchdown. The offense seemed to be stinking up the field, and really wasn't contributing much to the game. Something that the sportscasters noted who were at the game, was that Dick Butkus really didn't seem to be the head coach during the game. He pretty much just stood on the sidelines and did his routine either encouraging the team or looking disappointed and upset. Lou Cerro had the headset on and called the plays. Butkus claims that what he does it give direction on non-game days, and leaves the game day calls to Lou Cerro. It will be interesting to see how this plays out of television. The show will be on ESPN starting on September 20 at 10 pm.
Wednesday, August 17, 2005 -- Early Afternoon
Ben Roethlisberger caused a scene at the filming of the ESPN reality series at the Montour school district. He stopped by to say hello to Dick Butkus and to give the players some words of encouragement to go for an undefeated season. Bound for Glory is scheduled to start on ESPN on September 20.
Tuesday, August 9, 2005 -- Morning
Over at Montour School District, filming has begun for ESPN's reality series, Bound for Glory, that will show Dick Butkus coaching a local high school football team. The goal is supposed to be a championship, but considering the fact that Butkus has never coached before, it's probably not likely. Yesterday was the first day of training camp for the Montour Spartans, and things seemed to go well without Butkus really stepping on the toes of coach Lou Cerro. So far, Butkus only "knows" about 12 of the student players, but considering that he doesn't know how to pronounce their names, he must not know them that well. It just goes to show to what depths a school district will go to get some money. I don't think this was a move to get to a championship. Hiring Cerro was the thing that would get them to the championship. Having Butkus come in deters from the work that Cerro could do. I will be watching the series though since it is Pittsburgh based.