It seems Coach Hugh Freeze (CHF – it doesn’t just stand for Congestive Heart Failure anymore) has decided on the “theme” of umiss’s 2014 season, and it’s one that is probably familiar to most fans of his in-state rival, Mississippi State.
Just the other day, I happened to catch a glimpse of a headline, and something about it struck me as odd, so I just had to check out the article.
The article quotes CHF, I believe from SEC Media Days, as saying:
We’re about being all in, relentless effort. I don’t read a ton of books, but I read a couple every summer and try to get us a theme that we’ll introduce into our fall camp. This year’s will be about us being all in with relentless effort.
I was shocked. Not only by the fact that CHF admits he’s not an avid reader, but that he’s determined that the Bulldog Creed established five years ago at Mississippi State by Coach Dan Mullen will be the theme of this season for his umiss black bears.
It makes perfect sense that this should be the Bulldog Creed. After all, it originally was the tenacity or the “relentless effort” of our teams that earned us the nickname Bulldogs. According to the HailState.com article on our school traditions, while Bulldogs wasn’t officially the title for State teams until 1961, the nickname was used almost interchangeably with Aggies or Maroons as far back as 1905 when newspaper reports of our shut-out 11-0 victory over the University of Mississippi commented on the tenacious, relentless effort “bulldog” style of play of Mississippi A&M.
Although I hadn’t realized previously that CHF wanted to be a Bulldog, I immediately felt the need to congratulate Coach Freeze for seeing the wisdom in Coach Mullen’s vision of what it means to be a Bulldog.
— Lee Fowler (@BentBulldawg) August 5, 2014
In my initial shock over CHF’s advocacy of the Bulldog Creed, I failed to notice what occurred to me shortly thereafter — It was not only the vision of Coach Mullen to whom CHF was paying homage. That seemed to be only half of his theme this year. The other half was that he wanted his bears to be “All In.” Obviously CHF is also an Auburn fan.
We’re about being all in, relentless effort.
Other Mississippi State fans who saw my tweet to CHF were kind enough to inform me that the theme of umiss’s 2013 season, “Win the Day,” was not exactly an original concept either. Apparently CHF is also a Chip Kelly and Oregon fan.
This idea of each season needing it’s own theme is a new one to me. Does Mississippi State do this? I know that our marketing folks launched a “Fight for Mississippi State” campaign last football season, but on the material I’ve seen released this year, it appears that it wasn’t just a one season concept.
I wonder if CHF will ever want to use this one for a season.
While he admits that he does not read a lot of books, one thing about CHF has become clear: He pays a lot of attention to signs, plaques, and billboards.
And how do I, as a Bulldog fan, feel about CHF’s adoption of our Bulldog Creed as the umiss theme of the moment? Well, imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.