I had intended to write a fairly lengthy manifesto on this to publish yesterday, but the circumstances of my life -- beginning of school, part-time job, writing for CougCenter and SB Nation Seattle -- all conspired against me. But I wanted to get this on the record before today's game kicks off.
I believe in Paul Wulff.
If you've been around CougCenter since last season, that statement probably seems odd to you, seeing as how I didn't exactly provide a ringing endorsement when evaluating whether he should keep his job. But as the emotion of the end of last season has faded, I've realized some things.
I love his conviction. I love his brutal honesty. I love his transparency.
I love the way he and his coaching staff have recruited.
I love that he hasn't wavered one bit in his belief in the plan despite the constant criticism.
I love the fact that he hasn't appeared to let the criticism bother him personally, even though it probably does.
Regardless of how today's game turns out -- and it will probably be a two-touchdown (or more) loss -- I believe in Paul Wulff. This program is headed in the right direction, and a foundation is being laid for future success. One third of the players traveling to today's game have never played at the FBS level. Most of those guys will see action today.
Yes, the last two years have sucked. And he wasn't perfect. But I believe in his process. And I believe he's learned enough over the past two years that he's going to mature right along with his talent. And that's why I believe big things are ahead.
Despite the optimism around the team that comes with the opening of the season -- we were all pretty delusional two years ago, too -- I still think this is a one-win team. And even if it is, you will not hear me call for Paul Wulff's job at the end of this season.
I believe, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that Paul Wulff is the right man for this job. And if you don't, that's fine. Unlike a certain radio commentator and former coach, I'm not going to tell you what you should think, or that you're a bad fan if you don't think like me.
But Paul Wulff is my guy.
Paul Wulff is my coach.
And I believe in him -- and this team -- regardless of what happens today.
If that's not you right now, don't worry. There will be plenty of room on the train for you to climb on when this team makes a quantum leap forward next year.