(Photo courtesy of Miami Athletics)
This story doesn't end with a championship.
We lost in the semifinals to Boston College, and just like that the season was over yet again. But after everything we had been through over the previous two seasons, I could not have been more proud of my players. I'm as proud of that team that lost in the Frozen Four as the team that came within a minute of the title.
Sometimes coaching is about more than wins and losses.
That doesn't mean I still don't want a championship, because I do. I was asked recently how I balance the quest for winning a title with understanding that it's not the main purpose in my life, and I will confess that it's a struggle for me. I've spent 20 years as a head coach and 4 more as a player chasing after a championship, and when you don't accomplish that goal, the temptation is right in front of you to feel like a failure.
But sometimes God needs to remind me that I wasn't put on this Earth to win hockey championships. If that happens, that would be great, but when people remember me someday, I don't want them to say "Enrico Blasi won a title." I want them to remember that I loved God and loved people.
One of the things that keeps me grounded in my life's purpose is to go to church on most days of the week. Instead of taking a lunch break, I take 20 minutes off to head over to church. I'm flawed just like everybody else, and I continually ask God for forgiveness as I try and get back on the right path. Sometimes it feels like I'm just continually asking for forgiveness, but God knows that I am trying.
That faith has been really necessary over the last three years, because they have been reminiscent of my first three seasons. We have won 36 games since the 2015-16 season, and now I'm trying to rebuild the program for a second time.
It's made me appreciative of every win we do get, and if we ever do get back to contention, it'll be by doing things the right way. One Bible verse that I've kept in mind is from Luke 12:48, which says "To whom much is given, much is expected." God has given me more than I can ever imagine, but that doesn't mean He is expecting championships from me. He's just expecting me to honor Him in the pursuit.