Dick Harmon, of the Deseret News, was kind enough to write a special article on BYU's first day of camp for Block U. Enjoy.
The sun shone so brightly that day. Its light reflected picturesquely off his elegant face. The wind, a light breeze, scampered through his hair, ruffling it up in the most subtlest of ways.
With that, Bronco Mendenhall and his stripling warriors kicked off another fall camp, buoyed by surprisingly high preseason expectations.
A smile ushered in the start of contact drills, his whistle slightly perched between his ever firm lips. Bronco's eyes gazed forcefully at his Young Men, taking in every dazzling action on the field. Football had finally arrived and all the pent-up emotion from the spring and early summer months released in a flood of action.
Then a thud.
The players' bodies wrestled with one another, their muscles springing from their tightly worn uniforms. Max Hall, who had led the Cougars to a successful 2007 season, looked flawless in his arc, tossing the ball like a true pro.
Harvey Unga, his legs mammoth muscles of goodness, crushed through the defense like David Hasselhoff bursting through the Berlin Wall. BYU's offense was smooth -- milky smooth -- and you could see the delight in Bronco's chizzled face.
Mendenhall, all 250 pounds of football godliness, screamed encouragement to his soldiers, urging them to continue their hard quest to perfection. "12-0," he said, "Begins with 1-0."
Simple words, but released with such force and feeling, you could sense every stunning player was buying into his message. BCS or bust, that was the BYU mantra and it radiated from the towering LaVell Edwards pressbox to the west to the dominating Mount Timpanogos to the east. This was The Team, empowered by the strength of a hundred men, drenched in sweat, tanned by the burning sun above.
As the wind picked up, muddling Bronco's glowing hair even more, practice wound down. He called His Boys in, they formed a circle and said a private prayer. This was their time, he reiterated, stating they would not be denied their shot. At that, the boys ripped their uniforms off and headed for the showers. Bronco, left alone, stood at center field.
His head bowed as he was in silent thought. Undoubtedly in awe of the past glories on this very football field. McMahon, Young, Mahe and Beck, the splendor of Cougar past visibly touched Bronco. After a second, he glanced up, a tear sliding down his flawless cheek, and joined the other players in the locker room.
Day One of BYU Fall Camp had come to a close and the team looked ready to take on the world. In fact, based on the way they had performed, it's clearly apparent this team is not only ready for such a battle, they're expecting it.