To the Next #2,
Be a great person. Be a great teammate. Be a great student-athlete.
These three simple guidelines will be the very first thing you hear the moment you set foot in the locker room as a member of the Colgate Men's Soccer program. These are the standards Coach Ronning wishes to teach, instill, and perfect in our players each and every year. Four years ago, I was in your position as a freshman that was given the number 2. While I am writing to you as a senior captain now, I can admit that I have struggled with these three guidelines in my development in this program. It takes four years to harness each aspect of Colgate Men's Soccer. This has ultimately led me to the most important lesson I wish to pass on to you: this number 2 is never given, it is earned.
I've had quarrels with teammates. I've made mistakes on the field. I've made mistakes off the field. I've gotten bad grades. I've struggled with injuries. I've had bad games. I've been benched for those bad games. With every setback I've had, I would sense a metaphorical dent being inflicted on my golden plague of these three simple guidelines. But what I have learned from all these experiences is that it's the only way to improve.
You will make mistakes. You will struggle with teammates. You will have bad practices. You will not play. You will not start. You will not have a good game. But what each and every one of these moments will do is help you become a better person, teammate, and student-athlete.
You will learn to play faster. You will learn to play smarter. You will learn to defend better. You will learn to support your teammates. You will learn to make an impact in games. You will learn to be an impact on this team.
Once you figure out how to live by these three concepts, once you earn the number 2, you will earn your place in the historic Colgate Men's Soccer family. This is a family comprised of former players, coaches, trainers, and/or anyone that has proudly represented this name on their chest.
While this program competes for Patriot League Championships, this program values character, unity, and grit. It values being a member of the community and loving the guys battling on the field with you. While saying the three guidelines is easier said than done, living by them is worth the life that follows as a Colgate Men's Soccer player.
Colgate Men's Soccer
To the Next #2,