Long before Charlie Sheen made "Winning", the statement of the
year, the Boston College hockey team was writing the book on it.
They have captured the national championship, Beanpot Trophy, and
Hockey East title in the last ten months. It's rather obvious they're a
team that has no trouble getting motivated.
But several weeks ago, they got a motivational pep talk from a man
who gives very few of them outside of his place of employment.
Bill Belichick, the head coach of the New England Patriots and
reigning NFL coach of the year, stopped by Chestnut Hill, to
deliver some powerful words that the players won't soon forget.
"It was awesome, you could hear a pin drop when he walked in," said
long-time assistant coach Mike Cavanaugh. Belichick arrived in typical
Belichick style: sneakers, jeans, and black sweatshirt. (without the hoodie)
He was on the way to seeing his good friend, Jon Bon Jovi, perform at
the TD Banknorth Garden in Boston.
Belichick took the floor and talked about commitment, preparation, and
everyone holding themselves accountable for the good of the team.
"He said that when he was growing up, the family had just one car," Cavanaugh
recounted. "His dad used that car to go to work and his mom used it to
run errands. If you got the keys that night, you had the responsibility
of getting the car back in time and in working order. If not, you could
mess things up for the entire family."
Belichick compared that to the workings of a successful team. "He said, 'when
you go over the boards, you have a responsibility to the team,' Cavanaugh
added, 'if you don't do your job, then you can keep the team from winning.'
The coach who has led the Patriots to three Super Bowl titles also told
the team to cherish their time in college and to appreciate the camaraderie
that develops when fighting for national titles.
"He said that he'd often have conversations with players like Rodney Harrison,
Willie McGinnest, and Tedy Bruschi, who told them how special their
time in college was and how it went by so quickly. They all told them that
it was a great feeling, bonding with college teammates while trying to
win championships," Cavanaugh stated.
After Belichick finished with his talk, he opened the floor to questions.
Naturally, one of the first ones, centered on Tom Brady.
"Belichick said that Brady isn't the fastest quarterback, nor does he
have the best arm. But he said that Brady is just a player who is
totally committed to the team and making himself better. He works
the hardest and prepares the best," Cavanaugh stated.
Before he left, Belichick added one more thing. "He said, 'I'd wish you
luck, but it's not about luck. It's about who plays the best and the
best team will win. Luck has nothing to do with it,' Cavanaugh added.
And off he went, his next stop: the Bon Jovi concert. For the
BC hockey team, an unforgettable moment and words to think
about as they get ready to defend their national title.