Coach Mike Cochran with the 2009 Crimson Storm Football Senior players on the Summit of Mount Yale. Photo courtesy of Mike Cochran.
By Scott Secor, SNU’s Director of Sports Information
Southern Nazarene University head football coach Mike Cochran and his senior players successfully climbed Colorado’s Mount Yale as part of a leadership development program. Part of the program is putting a challenge in front of his players, namely getting to the top of Mount Yale’s 14,196-foot summit.
“I have found climbing a 14′er beneficial because it is very challenging; it is a new experience for everyone, and it results in a tremendous bond and sense of accomplishment,” said Cochran.
Cochran’s main goal is to challenge his seniors, not only physically, but spiritually and mentally. His hope is that this challenge prepares his core of leaders for the upcoming football season. “It is my experience that you cannot improve as a person or become the man God plans for you to be if you are in your comfort zone most of the time,” said Cochran. “By taking these young men out of their comfort zone and having them work together on something extremely difficult, (less than 4% of the population has climbed a 14′er,) they are bound to improve as an individual and grow closer together.”
Cochran took his seniors to Buena Vista, Colorado in early August for the climb. The 12 mile round trip took over two and a half days to complete. The elevation gain over 6 miles was approximately 5,000 feet.
“This trip was a great way to send our guys into their senior year and to equip them for the life God has planned for them after they leave SNU,” added Cochran. “It is impossible not to see what a great and awesome God we serve as you experience His creation in the process of ascending a 14′er. It is this process that makes you better and draws you closer to God.”
During the trip, the seniors determined their convictions and set process and outcome-oriented goals for the upcoming season.
The 2009 convictions:
1. Get better every day – Be process oriented
2. Wholly committed to God and team
3. WIN – What’s Important Now?
4. Maintain a Positive Mental Attitude
5. Buy In to what SNU football is about
6. You will never walk alone
The 2009 Team Goal: Win The Next Game