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After one season, Kramer’s impact on ISU football is evident
When I heard the familiar “ding” of my computer alerting me that an e-mail had found its way into my inbox, I didn’t think much of it.
After all, I get so much junk mail and phishing attempts (oftentimes in languages I can’t even read) that the new message very well could have been just another worthy of nothing more than a quick flick of the delete key.
I finally got around to looking at what had been sent and lo and behold I saw the name “Jon Kasper” adorning the “from” section. Kasper is the Assistant Commissioner of the Big Sky Conference, a man I have met a couple of times and does great things for the league.
This particular e-mail contained the 2012 preseason football poll that I was requested to fill out and return. That’s when it hit me: Football season is just around the corner.
My next thoughts brought me to where I would put Idaho State in relation to the rest of the conference. This year is particularly difficult with North Dakota, Southern Utah, Cal Poly and UC Davis all throwing their hats into the ring to be judged.
It’s always easiest to choose the top teams first, so I went with Montana State, Montana and Eastern Washington in that order.
Northern Colorado, of course, remains at the bottom.
I then found myself stuck. What do I do with the Bengals? Conceivably, they could finish the season with a better record than three to five teams. But will they do it? My gears started to grind.
After just one season, head coach Mike Kramer has worked wonders with the ISU football team both on and off the field. The APR issues have been fixed and the “trouble makers” or those who are unwilling to buy into Kramer’s style and system have been removed from the equation. What’s left is a group of players that enjoy being Bengals.
The team wants to win. Sometimes that is the difference between picking up a gritty win or suffering a tough loss. ISU’s talent may not compare to the Montana’s and the Montana State’s just yet, but the heart is there.
It seems that there is a bit of hype coming into the upcoming season as well, a long-lost occurrence in Pocatello.
Indeed, Kramer has made his mark at Idaho State and there is no doubt he will continue to do so.
So where do the Bengals go? I ended up writing them into the 10 spot with Sacramento State, UC Davis and Northern Colorado filling up 11 through 13. I can easily see that happening.
Who knows, if Northern Arizona or Weber State come out of the gate slowly (which is a possibility, especially with Weber’s coaching mess), ISU could finish higher.
Whatever happens, I will have a hard time counting the Bengals out of a fair number of their games. When was the last time that could be said about an ISU football team?
Kramer is working his magic. The proof will be in next season’s pudding.
By Chase Glorfield, Idaho State Journal