Just before leaving the hotel room Saturday, Virginia running back Albert Reid heard something that made him freeze. Then it burned him up.
On ESPN’s College GameDay, analyst Kirk Herbstreit offered two picks during a segment. Central Michigan would win. UVA would not. At all in 2016. 0-12.
— Erik Hall (@HallErik) September 24, 2016
Analysts pick against teams all the time – it’s part of the job. But that last part really bothered Reid. He fired off a Tweet that was retweeted more than 100 times. The message spread through the team too.
" UVA probably won't win a game this year. This should be a look ahead game for Centra Michigan" – ESPN College Gameday 😤
— Albert Reid (@_reidboy2) September 24, 2016
The Cavaliers took that shoulder trip with them to the field. They jumped out to a 15-0 lead at the end of the first quarter and a 28-0 lead with 10:34 still to go in the half. The Chippewas fought back eventually, of course, but the Cavaliers pulled away again late for the 49-35 victory.
Reid still had fire in his eyes when the media asked him about the ESPN comments after the game.
“I just want to thank College GameDay for not believing in us,” Reid said with intensity. “I want to thank everybody for not believing in us because we proved you wrong. Everybody else who doubted us, thank you. Don’t come back when we continue to win. I heard it right when I came out of the hotel room. I looked at Smoke [Taquan Mizzell] and said okay we have something for you. I don’t care who it was. I know it was on ESPN College GameDay and they doubted us. I tweeted it and showed the team. They disrespected us and made us the laughing stock of TV today just because they said this game for Central Michigan was going to be a lookover game.”
Mizzell, roommates with Reid before games, echoed those thoughts.
“I heard UVA and heard what they were talking about,” Mizzell said. “Reid told me about it and as soon as I heard I wanted to quote it. We let the guys know in the locker room, so it was great motivation right there. I don’t care who said it, I was happy to hear it. It’s been a rough start to the season, but you can never count us out. It is football.”