With 0-2 record, Rob Ambrose says Towson 'will play the guys that love football'

Tigers coach disappointed by lack of commitment from some players and promised change in personnel

September 08, 2014|By Edward Lee, The Baltimore Sun

Towson’s 54-0 loss to West Virginia on Saturday night may have been stunning to Tigers fans, but it brought on a different feeling from coach Rob Ambrose.

Ambrose, who had not been shut out since Nov. 6, 2010 when Delaware beat Towson, 48-0, was critical of his team’s effort against the Mountaineers, saying, “We cleared up some of the fog of the fakers. We found out the guys who talk the talk that don’t walk the walk. They won’t see the field. We will play the guys that love football and love each other.”

During his weekly conference call organized by the Colonial Athletic Association, Ambrose elaborated on that comment.

“At halftime, I said [to the team] there was no score, there was no two quarters of play, there was no 30 minutes of play, just six seconds,” Ambrose said. “Then I challenged each and every guy in that locker room to play as hard as they could for their brother for six seconds at a time until they couldn’t go anymore. ‘Raise your hands, tap out, and I’ll get somebody else in there for you and let them do it until you’re ready to come back.’

"And if we did that, then we could grow and compete and get better. When the game was over, I was disappointed because I thought I had a ton of guys that were not committed to that. Watching the film and the film never lies, … I was disappointed at the time, and I was disappointed yesterday because I -- which I can’t fathom -- found some guys that did not give that kind of effort. Those guys got called out, and we’re going to move forward in a way that limits their playing time and gives us a better chance to win.”

At 0-2, the Tigers have not looked anything like the squad that went 13-3 and advanced to the Football Championship Subdivision title game in January. But the team still has CAA play, which begins Sept. 27, and Towson can get its first win at Delaware State (0-2) on Saturday.

Ambrose said that Saturday’s game is especially meaningful for Towson’s confidence.

“You have to take the lessons of the past and apply them to the future,” he said. “But confidence is not a fake thing, not in the game of football. You can’t be fake and survive. Confidence is earned, and it’s earned by how much you invest in your own success and how much you invest in your group success and how much you invest in your team success.

"The investment by our players is increasing week to week for a bunch of guys who thought they were maybe just going to put a helmet on and be successful. So we’re definitely growing in that manner, and we’re working on earning our confidence right now.”

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