by Brad Shulkin
“Why not us.”
You all remember Derrick Rose talking to the media and like any young player, he was optimistic about his chances of winning the Most Valuable Player Award this season. No one gave him the chance—just another kid who had goals as high as space.
You all know the ending to this story…
Similar to Rose and the Bulls, the Indiana Hoosiers football team is in the same position—near the bottom of the Big Ten and struggling to win consistently.
That’s where Ron Carpenter comes in.
With the goal of one day playing in the NFL, Carpenter was not stopping for anything, even after a knee injury his senior year that almost ended his career.
“As an athlete, you can’t doubt yourself,” Carpenter said.
Like I said before he does not stop for anything. He joined the Miami of Ohio football team as a walk-on and later signed with the Vikings as a free agent. After playing for the Vikings, Bengals, Jets, and Rams in five total seasons, the struggle to compete with the level of competition led him to the Arena football league and later to coaching.
With Carpenter’s experience and passion for the game, he believes that the Hoosiers can win…just like Rose and the Bulls.
“You can turn around a college team in one year,” Carpenter said. “We have put in the work just like everyone, so why can’t we do it.”
It referring to winning and the reason why there are doubters of the Indiana football program is because over the past 3 seasons, they have failed to even compete in a bowl game; Meaning that they struggle to win games.
After being hired six months ago, Carpenter brings his nine years of coaching and player experiences to an Indiana team that is in dire need of help. As the Defensive quality control specialist, his job entails just about everything…but coaching.
“I want to learn as much as I can about the Defensive Coordinator,” Carpenter said. “I hope that this job can act as an opportunity to move up and eventually become a head coach.”
Ron is now 41 and his chance to become a head coach in either college or the NFL is slowly dwindling away. But, never count him out. His entire life has been about passion and fight, and look at where that’s gotten him?