Proud to be a Pilot

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Proud to be a Pilot

Post by The Wingman on Fri Jun 10, 2016 11:52 pm

Fellow Pilots:

It's time to celebrate a tremendous offseason for men's Pilot Basketball. I can tell you that as a Pilot student and alum for over 20 years, I have never been more excited about men's basketball. I will be the first to admit I was initially unsure about the Terry Porter hire. It's crazy to think that a Pilot basketball fan would ever be unsure about a two-time former NBA coach and Blazer icon taking the Pilot helm. But, I've been down this path before with two previous Blazer legends unsuccessfully guiding the Pilot program. So, what's different?

First, Terry Porter has both of his sons committed to the program. Both these young men are skilled basketball players who will automatically upgrade the much needed athleticism of the team. I suspect both players will fill the void of the sorely missed leadership and steadiness of Bryce Pressley. Bottom line, we don't get either of these talented young men without their dad as the head coach. Plus one Pilot fans.

Second, the coaching staff Porter has assembled is unprecedented. Bob Cantu is a nationally ranked D-1 assistant coach. The guy can recruit and he can coach. He was ranked the #2 assistant coach in the Pac 10 at USC and a top-5 mid-major coach at UTEP. He is now a Pilot. Honestly, I never thought I'd see this day. If that wasn't enough, Porter was able to lure Coach Johnson from Australia. Yes, another succesful former Pac 12 coach and another great recruiter. His track record at WSU speaks for itself. He's also a former Dick Bennett disciple, which is a strong indicator of another high IQ assistant coach on the UP staff. His connections to Australia are an added bonus. Plus two Pilot fans.

I've had a few amazing moments as an alum of the Pilot Nation. I'll never forget the first or second National Championship by the Lady Pilots soccer teams. I also have never been more proud of a team represented by UP than I was the day men's Cross Country took the podium at the national championships and claimed a third place finish. Those moments are few and far between for UP Athletics.

I realize Terry Porter's team hasn't taken the floor yet. We haven't seen a single victory. But, we have never had greater hope for optimism for men's basketball. Chier is an incredible talent. Alec is an amazing point guard. It will take some time, but I'm convinced we're on a path to success. It's time, Pilot faithful. It's time to take on Saint Mary's, Gonzaga and BYU. It's time to beat the teams we're supposed to beat. It's time to make the Chiles Center special again. It's time to be proud to be a Pilot again. WCC, here we come!! Go Pilots!!!!

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Re: Proud to be a Pilot

Post by PilotNut on Wed Jun 15, 2016 6:08 pm

I will agree, Wingman! There is a change in attitude on the Bluff... and I am liking what seems to be taking shape. It is clear that there has been a renewed investment in the program from the University... lets hope that continues.

Between the men's basketball coaching overhaul & new practice facility, Men's soccer new energy/direction, a vastly improving volleyball program, new baseball coach & facilities (and hopefully soon a new stadium!), things are looking up around the Athletic Department... which is very good news!

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