Just a few short months ago, a cloud hung over the Bishop Dwenger football program.
In February, Jason Garrett was named the coach of the Saints, replacing Chris Svarczkopf. Shortly after that, a Facebook post began circulating accusing Garrett of the assault of a player during a football practice in 2014.
This column isn’t about revisiting that incident or the accusatory back and forth that went on inside and outside of the media over a period of weeks and, with some, months.
In the end, the Bishop Dwenger administration stood by their guy, backing Garrett as he prepared for his first season at the helm of the Saints.
But there was, and still is, a faction within the Bishop Dwenger community that want Garrett to fail. They were licking their lips as the season was set to begin against an upstart Wayne team. A loss would have brought out some rumblings. With each successive defeat, the cries for Garrett’s ouster would have grown.
Instead, Garrett and the Saints are off to a 5-0 start after a 34-14 defeat of Carroll on Friday night. In typical Dwenger fashion, the team is winning games without flash on the field and minus the social media bravado off the field.
Garrett has pushed all the right buttons with this team. It is not a roster bursting with elite talent. T.J. McGarry is the football equivalent of the boulder that Indiana Jones has to run away from in Raiders of the Lost Ark and Joe Tippmann could block the Optimum Performance Sports 30-foot RV from penetrating the backfield. But in terms of playmakers, this Saints squad isn’t wowing people on the Friday Highlight Zone.
Friday’s victory was another example of a win without flash. Carroll caught Dwenger off balance by going up tempo to start the game, not allowing the Saints to dial up the defensive pressure on Gaven Vogt. But Dwenger adjusted quickly, allowing just a single TD following the Chargers’ score on the game’s opening drive.
However Dwenger is doing it, the fact is that it is happening. The Saints fan base was split in the offseason. In some ways, it still is. Yet how Garrett has run the program and, more importantly to some, stacked up victory after victory, has kept the haters at bay that were hoping to have openings to attack through the first half of the 2018 season.
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