A View from the Booth: Changing of the Guards

bigmurph23 · June 24, 2024


By: Nate Murphy (@bigmurph23)

As my team prepares for our Week Eight battle I thought I would take a moment to step into the broadcast booth here at Mountaineer Field for my first view from the booth article in quite a while. We have reached rivalry week here in the CFSL and as we have built up to this through the first seven weeks one thing has become clear; There is a changing of the guards here in the league. 

I don’t necessarily mean we will have a new National Champion, though we could very well. No, I’m referring to the root cause of why we might have a new champion this season. It has been talked about, almost ad nauseum, this season. Gone are the steroid era “freaks”, gone are the jacked-up, 99 everywhere, 99 overall teams throughout the league. Maybe, more importantly, gone are the days of not needing to game plan. It was easier (well I’m sure it was easier for those fortunate teams) to throw out their settings and know they had the superior team and were better than 99% likely to win a game. 

As the steroid era will be looked back on fondly I believe the current setup of the league will be just as beloved if not more so. Teams like my Mountaineers, Tennessee, Michigan State who are still building momentum, Baylor, and others now have a legitimate shot at not only competing but winning. Even in the non-steroid era, these teams aren’t as loaded as some of the others. But game planning has made the difference. You could see both Tennessee’s losing streak coming to an end from early in this season. You saw Michigan State’s first win coming at some point soon. Last season Baylor put up some impressive wins so you knew they would have some success this season too. And WVU has been up and down the last few seasons just waiting to put it all together. 

How are these teams doing it? How are they upsetting better teams? How are they looking at playoff spots when on paper they could be out of it by now? They are figuring things out in the week between games. They are grinding as a staff to figure out what works and what doesn’t. The new guard doesn’t just come out of nowhere. They have been doing this since the steroid era, just with little to no success. Now, well it all means something. The hours they are putting in running and watching sims, changing settings, toying with depth charts perhaps, looking for anything they think might give them an edge means something. 

And please don’t get me wrong. EVERY AD and coaching staff are doing this week in and week out. They have to be to compete. But for teams like my Mountaineers, the work is starting to pay off because the game plan means everything now. It is the difference between a mark in the win column and one in the loss column. 

Good luck to all coaching staffs this week as you game plan for rivalry week. Stay tuned and pay attention to these new teams making a push as we all watch the changing of the guards. 


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