Blame a tough schedule, blame the weather, blame school policies; just do it on your own time is the memo indicated by the CSU baseball team.
"You can't really make any excuses," said fifth year shortstop Brooks Purdy. "But it's tough when you can't see any live pitching in practice and the other teams have been seeing it for weeks."
School policy has prevented the back-to-back national champion baseball team from playing any home games to this point in the season (not to mention greatly limiting practices) as they look to win a third straight title.
"It's obviously tough to go on the road for a month," said David Schultz, second baseman and team president for CSU baseball. "But you don't win championships in March. The team knows that and that's how we have to think."
Having worked their odometers, already traveling to Otero Junior College (6-0), Lamar Community College (4-2) and Trinidad State Junior College (10-4), a detour through Greeley is all that separates the Rams from their home field.
"Our record isn't too big of a deal right now," Schultz said. "We know what we have to do, and as a team we know we can do it."
The Rams (2-9) will take on the UNC club team this weekend in a four game set before their home opening rivalry weekend on March 11-12 with CU (0-0).
"We're a better team than our record shows," Purdy said. "As we start to see some pitching, I know we can win some of these games against the Otero's and even beat teams like UNC."
But the Rams feel a sense of swagger to their step.
"We're a veteran team and considering who we've played I'm not too worried," Schultz said. "There's no sense of urgency, we know it's a long season and there's a lot of ball to play"
And not to look past the pitching of veteran leader Thomas (Tommy) Ahrens, the team looks to out-do their top ranking predecessors.
"When I look at it, this is the best team I've seen positionally in my five years," Purdy said.
This year, taking over for pitching extraordinaire Frank Gonzalez, infield minded Mike Abernathy will be at the helm for the Rams.
And to the fans: Don't forget the Bachelor/Bachelorette auction as the baseball team will join forces with the women's lacrosse team at the Ramskeller Tuesday to help fund the club sports programs.
Sat: noon @ UNC
Sun: noon @ UNC
Tue, Mar. 7 @ Ramskeller: player auction $3, 7 to 9 p.m.