Vincent challenges team after loss

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, May 17, 2006

You can say almost anything about Greenville head football coach Bryant Vincent, but you can't say he's going to put up with losing. After the varsity Tigers dropped a 14-12 decision to visiting Highland Home Friday night Vincent gave a fiery 20 minute oratorical to his players on what it's going to take to be a winner, something Greenville hasn't been in a long time.

But even though the Tigers gave up a 12-0 advantage and allowed the Flying Squadron to take the lead after a 16-play drive, Vincent said he saw a lot of positive things after watching film of the scrimmage.

&#8220We did a lot of good things,” he said. &#8220We just got tired and started missing tackles. That last drive was a 16-play drive and you've got to tip your hats to them to show the guts and courage to come back, but when you sit back and look at the film it doesn't lie and I felt really good after watching the film.”

One thing the film did show was an offense that could move the ball. With sophomore transfer Casey Weston under center, the Tigers mustered 225 yards of offense in three quarters with Weston going 10-for-12 for 161 yards and two TD's in Vincent's newly installed run and shoot offense.

&#8220In three quarters that's pretty good,” Vincent said.

While many coaches would take a spring game lightly, Vincent said this game was big for his Tigers; much bigger than anyone might think at first blush, which is why he threw down the gauntlet to his players and coaches afterwards.

&#8220The main thing I wanted to get across to them is that we can win (football games) in Greenville,” he said. &#8220The hardest part of turning a football program around is getting (the players) to believe they can win. That is the hardest job I have right now. I knew when I took this job I knew it wasn't going to be easy and I knew if we could have won that game what it would have done to the mentality.”

While Vincent is working to instill a winning attitude in his players and get the &#8220swagger” back, he said he knows he's getting the support he needs from administration.

&#8220Dr. (Kathy) Murphy, our principal, is 100 percent behind me and our athletic program and she's played an instrumental part in our progress,” he said. &#8220With her in my corner I know we're going to get where we need to be.”

With the book now closed on the spring and a short summer ahead of him, Vincent told his team Friday night that he would find out in the weight room this summer who wanted to be a winner in the fall.

&#8220There's no question in my mind we're going to win some games next year, how many depends on how hard we work this summer,” he said. &#8220There's going to be some ups and downs. Things like (losing) don't get me down, they just make me get in there and grind a little harder. It's going to happen.”