One of the things I like about our new football coach is that everyone who interacts with him comes away with the same description, "intense." I have never met John Bunting, but it sure does create a favorable impression to be described as intense, because in my opinion, that is what we have been missing for the past few years. I have convinced myself that I can takes losses but what I can't take is a lack of intensity.
Now you might wonder what exactly is intensity. Webster gives several definitions for the word, one of which is, "a high degree of emotional excitement." That's the definition I like best. Football is all about emotion, much more than in most other sports. Emotion won't put the ball in the basket or make the bat meet the ball, but it can enable one to knock someone on their backside or enable one to run over someone who is attempting a tackle.
There is something about Coach Bunting that causes those who have come into contact with him to describe him as intense. It can't be the words he uses because words are cheap. I have concluded that it is a combination of the look in his eyes, intonation and his body language. Of course, words are involved but there has to be more than words if true intensity is present.
I think the most impressive quote I have heard since Coach Bunting was hired was attributed to a player UNC was attempting to recruit. He said that JB was intense and that he would win at Carolina. Now this is coming from someone who did not elect to attend UNC. Quite a compliment, I would say.
How does one measure intensity other than in face to face situations? One way would be to observe how the practices are conducted and I am told there is a different attitude in the practice sessions. Those in a position to know say there is a more business like approach to things in practice. Less standing around, less conversation, and yes, less goofing off or as we used to say in the service, less gold bricking.
I wish I could have been in attendance at the Blue-White game on Saturday but I couldn't make it. I plan to talk to some who were in attendance soon and I hope they report a difference in the intensity level during the intra-squad game. I don't know exactly what I would have keyed on if I had been present for the game and it may be that intensity in a game situation is like the old adage about pornography. It has been said that many can't define pornography but they don't have difficulty in identifying it when they encounter it. If the teams were intense last Saturday, I think those in attendance would have been able to detect it.
All of this comes from someone who has often been accused of being intense. I'm ready to see some of this on the gridiron because I think intensity, if not overdone, leads to good things. I don't know about you, but I'm ready for some of these good things to happen and I honestly believe they will.