It’s Just Nicholls State… It’s a sentiment prideful Nicholls alum such as myself hear all too often. No one wants to hear nor does anyone care about Nicholls State University […]
It’s Just Nicholls State…
It’s a sentiment prideful Nicholls alum such as myself hear all too often. No one wants to hear nor does anyone care about Nicholls State University outside of our own little bubble. That’s ok because we are proud to be in that bubble. We are proud of the school we earned our respective degrees from. We are proud of that community that made us fall in love with our university in the first place.
From the time I was 9 or 10 when my oldest sister played soccer for the Colonels, I knew I wanted to attend Nicholls. I loved the campus. I loved the small town of Thibodaux. Nicholls was my plan A, B, C, D, E, F, G…that wasn’t going to change. It was either get in or I don’t know what the hell to do.
When Jonathan Terrell aka “JT” held his first press conference as the new Athletic Director in 2020, he said the following
“Not often do you attend a university that makes a stamp on your life like Nicholls State University has done to me and my family. To be able to give back and work for a place that holds such a special place in your heart and that you have so much passion for is extraordinary. I say this a lot about Nicholls State, ‘it’s a one of a kind place.”
It’s just Nicholls State became the ultimate source of irony in 2018. Nicholls was a 10 point dog heading into the season opener against the University of Kansas. I put money down on the game knowing that was an easy cover. There was some KU student holding a sign that said the phrase we have heard all too often…It’s Just Nicholls State. Not only did Nicholls cover, they upset the Jayhawks.
That of course turned into viral content for us and thus “iT’s JuSt NiChOLLs sTaTe” was born. The gut punch we are all very familiar with became fuel and no longer a punchline. That was just the beginning of the best run in school history, although many knew something special was brewing long before that.
The day Nicholls inked Tim Rebowe as their new head coach, I immediately called one of my best friend’s who played for Rebowe at UL. I’ll never forget the conversation because of how excited I was when it was confirmed he was going to be the new head coach. My friend literally told me “Nicholls just got put on the map.” I believed it and knew it before he said it.
I had heard from more than one person with an ear on the ground about how great of a recruiter Rebowe is. The real reason I was excited about him is he understands three things…
A. Small towns because he grew up in one.
B. Louisiana and the talent pool in the state.
C. The challenges that come with Nicholls.
You see, winning at Nicholls takes a special kind of person. You have to be built different. You have to understand the community. You have to understand that you’re playing behind the 8-ball. You have to understand that you’re always going to be an afterthought. You have to embrace all of those things. That goes beyond just athletics. This university has never been in a better position both academically and athletically. You know what our president (Jay Clune) and AD have in common? They both are alum and Colonels through and through.
Although Rebowe did not graduate with a degree from Nicholls, he understands it based on the three things I said above.
One of my favorite stories I heard from someone who played in the era before Rebowe and now coaches under Rebowe is what he told his staff and players in year one. He let everyone know real quick that his team wouldn’t tolerate “energy vampires.” He didn’t want guys who would suck the life out of the team. If you did, you can basically get the hell out. I fucking love that.
Prior to Rebowe, our staff didn’t understand the community and that being a face in the community was important. I remember right after Rebowe was hired, he worked the drive thru at McDonalds near campus to get out in the community. I have heard stories of him attending crawfish boils and just being involved with our family and community. He’s bringing energy to the community and thus the community backs him. It’s night and day from what was happening before.
He was the right man for the job, period. That was a tall order when he came in.
While working at Nicholls 2010-13), I would hear the players talk. I would hear the coaches talk. As much as I wanted us to win, I always saw the writing on the wall. That is no disrespect meant to anyone who played there or anyone who coached there, but we didn’t have the right people in place. Our head coach didn’t understand small town Louisiana. We often transferred JUCO guys from across the map. We recruited less talented areas of the state. There was no cohesion among the team. There was always divide and you could feel it. From 2010-2014, Nicholls had a record of 10-47 overall and 4-32 in conference.
Rebowe took over an absolute dumpster fire. After five seasons and only 4 conference wins, Rebowe won three conference games in his first season in 2015. By the end of 2016, he doubled the conference win total from the previous five years. For the first time since 2005, Rebowe coached Nicholls in 2016 to their first winning record in conference play at 5-4.
We had a small taste of how things were going to turn around after two close losses. In 2016, Nicholls lost 16-14 to Georgia. Then in 2017 (our first of 3 consecutive playoff seasons), Nicholls was edged out by Texas A&M 24-14. Kevin Sumlin attempted the most cunt move ever trying to run up the score with a late TD, which led to them settling for a field goal instead of running out the clock. It was hilarious when he was eventually fired. What a dildo.
Of course there was the aforementioned 26-23 OT win over Kansas.
Let’s put this in another perspective for the assholes who think these losses or close wins against “bad teams” are just that. You are right, but those are the games schools like Nicholls should never win or even be within striking distance of winning. There’s a reason teams get paid for games like that. Yet, here we are more often than not fighting until the end despite a massive discrepancy in budget. Hell, even in the Southland, Nicholls is one of the bottom schools in budget.
- Georgia Athletic Budget: $143 Million
- Texas A&M Athletic Budget: Roughly $212 Million
- Kansas Athletic Budget: Roughly $100 Million
- Nicholls Athletic Budget: $9.5 Million
After LSU went 5-5 this season, I am real disappointed we didn’t get the showdown between Nicholls and LSU as scheduled. Part of that stigma of being at Nicholls, I would mention my excitement for LSU v Nicholls and I got the typical laughs as if it somehow out of the realm of possibility for a fight and potentially a win. Georgia was 8-5. Texas A&M was 7-5. Both middle of the road in the SEC.
That is the confidence behind Rebowe though. No matter who they play, it feels like they have a shot. Those were just small footprints in what was to come for Nicholls. We knew we were on the brink of something special.
Nicholls has lost key players on both sides of the ball over the years, guys like Sully Laiche. In 2020 or 2021 (whatever year the season will go down as), they lost arguably the most important player and without a doubt the best QB in Nicholls history in Chase Fourcade. I can point to a team down the road from good ole Thibodaux and say look what happens when you lose a star QB. You know damn well who I am talking about.
This a cliche we hear all the time in sports, but for Nicholls it is 100% truth…NEXT MAN UP.
Going back to the QB, it’s ironic that the next guy up is someone who was an LSU cast off. Join the club, Lindsey Scott. Nicholls is 2-0 so far this season, outscoring their opponents Lincoln and Lamar 142-3. Scott scored 6 TDs (3 Passing, 3 Rushing) in his first Southland conference game this weekend.
Despite Covid and a weird season, Nicholls appears to be on a rampage thus far. If they keep rolling, we could be looking at a 3peat for the Southland which is unprecedented considering they have 5 conference titles in school history. Hopefully this is finally the year where we can take home the natty.
No matter what, it is a great time to be a Colonel. We owe it to our guy Tim Rebowe. We have three straight postseason appearances, two straight conference championships, two playoff victories and 22 conference victories since he took over.
Most importantly, we have a team we can proudly cheer on and represent that beautiful red and gray supporting the goddamn Colonels. For those who aren’t part of the Nicholls fam, I don’t expect you to understand how much this means to us. After all, we’re jUsT NiCHoLLs sTaTe. You never understood us to begin with.
I ask that you kindly…
(Reshare) No Colonel column would be complete without a list of Tim Rebowe facts…
10. Tim Rebowe has a grizzly bear rug in his office. The bear isn’t dead. He is just terrified to move.
9. Tim Rebowe was once bitten by a cobra. After 7 days of excruciating pain, the cobra died.
8. (From a close source) – Tim Rebowe once took a casual bike ride on vacation and ended up winning the Tour de France.
7. In 3rd grade English, Tim Rebowe’s teacher asked for a 1,000 word essay on courage. Tim Rebowe just turned in a blank page with his name at the top. Tim Rebowe received an A+.
6. When Bruce Banner gets mad, he turns into The Hulk. When Tim Rebowe gets mad, run.
5. Tim Rebowe has no middle name because nothing gets between Tim Rebowe.
4. Nicholls State University considered naming an intersection Tim Drive and Rebowe Road. That was until they realized no one crosses Tim Rebowe and lives to tell the story.
3. Tim Rebowe is a multi sport athlete. He once bowled a perfect game with a marble.
2. Brett Favre can throw a football 50 yards under water. Tim Rebowe can throw Brett Favre even further.
1. Tim Rebowe’s computer doesn’t have a backspace button because Tim Rebowe doesn’t make mistakes.
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