ORONO – During the playoffs teams have to adapt.
“This is their off day so usually they get to sleep in Sunday and then Monday. This is really there Tuesday and this is how we’ve had to explain it to them,” Maine football head coach Joe Harasymiak said.
With its national quarterfinal game taking place Friday night, the Black Bears have lost a day as it prepares for No. 3 Weber State.
“They’re sound they’re really well coached and they’re disciplined and they got playmakers and they got guys on defense. They’re going to stay sound we’re going to have to beat them you know scheme them up obviously and you know we have to execute just like we did last week,” quarterback Chris Ferguson said.
Maine knows all about the elements, cold, snow, sleet. It’s been through it all, but what it hasn’t played in is higher altitude.
“We’ve talked to other coaches that have been out there and played there and we have some coaches on staff who have coached out west,” Harasymiak said.
Weber State sits 4,300 feet above sea level, which means there’s less oxygen. Maine isn’t worried.
“We’re going to make sure we run around all day in practice get it right in the weight room, but at the end of the day if you’re a dog you’re going to eat,” cornerback Manny Patterson said.
For the ninety plus dogs from Orono, Maine, no bone has been given. Instead, it’s been taken.
“All of the doubters from preseason saying we were going to finish this and that. Just for us to be able to come out here and execute and do everything that we’ve been able to do all season. Last game just showed everybody what we can really do,” Patterson said.
Maine and Weber State are set to kickoff Friday at 8 p.m. The game can be seen on ESPN 2.