03/08/2012 6:06 PM
“Handle [Rush] Business.” A simple phrase that means many things to many people; to some it is a reminder of actions left unfinished, to others it provides motivation to complete an arduous journey. For the 2012 Chicago Rush, it provides all that and more: it defines the mindset of a team ready to make a statement this season.
Chicago is entering their eleventh season in the Arena Footbal League and second under Head Coach Bob McMillen. Monday’s media day highlighted a common thread woven by McMillen through his 2012 roster: camaraderie, high-character, and a commitment to process required to win. The history of sport is littered with supremely talented athletes that were unable to reach their full potential. The keys to building a successful team, therefore, extend beyond the X’s and O’s and are recognized at the intersection of talent and attitude.
The Rush only return five starters from a team that finished 13-6 during McMillen’s first season as Head Coach. Despite the turnover and influx of youth, it is already clear the philosophy of the coaching staff has rubbed off on the team. New arrivals, such as Wide Receiver and Defensive Back Terrence Turner, match their talent levels with infectious enthusiasm. When the nickname “Audi” was suggested to describe the speedy Turner (who’s initials “TT” match the popular line of cars), fellow rookie Courtney Harris (offensive and defensive line) joked, “That nickname doesn’t work, because an Audi won’t get tackled from behind.”
An inescapable truth surfaces once the laughter has subsided: these players are committed to playing a winning brand of football. Second year lineman C.J. Cobb summarized the thoughts of the entire team: “I’m looking for a big, big season. We’re definitely trying to go all the way this year. I think we got the guys here to do it, and we’re going to have fun. This is a family. We’re all here, we put the work in during camp, about to go hard and get this championship.”
Chicago will open the season at home against the Tampa Bay Storm this Saturday, March 10 at 8:00pm ET - the first step towards a championship, the first step as a family and the first chance to handle their business.