As a competitor, it’s tough standing by as one’s team struggles through a difficult game, and over the past few weeks McKay Jacobson has gone from pass-catcher to supporting his team as best he can from the sidelines.
“Yeah that was tough,” said a somber Jacobson. “But that game is over, so as much as it hurt not being out there – you know, struggling with your teammates and not doing our best as a team was really tough – right now, we’re not really worried about that game and have to look ahead.”
The goal of the Cougars this year was to win the conference championship. The question is now how the team responds to the loss to TCU, who is now clearly in the Mountain West Conference championship driver seat.
“Well, I think we’ll see from here,” Jacobson said. “I do think we’ll respond well to the loss to TCU and I’m not really worried about that. Right now we’re still getting ready for the next game and you never really know what might the reaction might be. We’ll just have to see how we prepare and how we finish off the year. I know we’ll continue to work hard and that’s the most important thing. Working hard and just trying to have fun is a big thing and I think we’ll do that and go out and win.”
One theme that has resonated throughout the Cougars has been that football is about having fun. Sure, losing isn’t fun, but there is a lot of time for some of those negative emotions to filter out. The Cougars have a bye week this week and it comes at the right time. They can get some spring back in their legs and heal up some nagging injuries prior to facing Wyoming in Laramie on November 7.
“This is a week where those players that we need to get healthy get healthy,” Jacobson said. “It allows us to get rested up and get our legs back a bit, and it also allows us to go back and work on individual skills. We’re not working on preparing for a game, and so all of the attention can come back on ourselves.”
Meanwhile, the Cougars aim on getting back to winning.
“I think overall we’re still optimistic about the season,” said Jacobson. “I think we’re still going to work hard and go out there and win. Right now we’re just going to try and take care of what we have control over. We want to go out and win the rest of our games and the go to a bowl game. When we go to a bowl game then we’ll go out and try and win that one, and that’s the plan.”
With an extra week to heal, Jacobson anticipates being able to play against the Cowboys, and he’s excited to get back out onto the field again.
“Yeah, I’ll be ready to play for the next game,” said Jacobson. “The coaches haven’t said anything to me but I’ll be ready to go, and I think when the times comes I’ll be a little anxious. Right now it’s just fun to be out here practicing again with the team, but yeah, I’ll be ready to go.”