What CSU’s Rocky Mountain Showdown Victory Teaches Us About College and Business

On the first day of September, virtually the entire Colorado State University community had one thing on its mind: the Rocky Mountain Showdown football game against the University of Colorado Buffaloes.

Defense

For those who were able attend the game in Denver, the Rams put on an exciting show both schools have come to expect from the annual faceoff. After 48 minutes of white-knuckle action, the CSU Rams emerged victorious in a 22-17 win over the Buffs.

If you watched the game, you know that the play wasn’t always smooth. Penalties inflicted harm on both teams, and there were turnovers to go around. However, the Rams were able to fight for the win, and the tactics that gave them the advantage serve as a great analogy for personal success in the collegiate and professional worlds…

You have to earn respect and recognition.

Before the game ever started, Coach McElwain sent a message with his choice in uniforms for the 2012 season. McElwain ditched the pizzazz of the previous year in favor of plain, sharp jerseys.

“To me you have to earn the uniform,” McElwain said. “As of right now, we haven’t done any of that. I do believe we will.”

In the professional world, you have to expect to work your way to the top. Your first job will likely not be an upper-management position, but there is nothing stopping you from reaching your goals. If you begin your career humble but determined, you will earn the deference you seek in time.

When an opportunity comes along, take it.

 The Rams found opportunities on both offense and defense that aided in their victory. On defense, the Rams were able to hold the Buffs to a grand total of 58 rushing yards for the entire game. The CSU defense also put a great deal of pressure on CU’s quarterback, Jordan Webb, and made it difficult for the transfer from Kansas to compensate for the team’s weak running game.

On offense, the Rams were able to capitalize on two mistakes by the Buffs. The first was a bad punt that gave the Rams excellent field position. CSU was able to move the ball forward and score before halftime. The second mistake was a personal foul by a CU defenseman, which moved the Rams an additional 15 yards forward, and subsequently led to another touchdown.

Finding and taking advantage of prospects is crucial in college. Especially in terms of networking and finding job opportunities, students should always be on the lookout for chances to advance their careers. At work, employees also need to seek these opportunities. Taking the lead on projects and going the extra mile in your position are great ways to grab the attention of your boss.

Solid leadership is essential for success.

CSU was truly invested in a “Bold New Era” when McElwain was brought to Fort Collins from Alabama. He brought with him not only a solid skillset as a coach, but a mentality of winning that the CSU football program desperately needed. McElwain’s statement that hard work would produce results was an indispensable component of the Rams’ victory.

Becoming a good leader is not necessarily something that students can gain from textbooks – it takes experience. That’s why the College of Business encourages students not only to get involved in the many programs and organizations available through the College, but to also take part in a leadership position. The ability to govern groups (be they small groups for class projects or large teams for national competitions) is a skill that automatically boosts your employability.

 

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