You either win or you learn!

Friday, September 15, 2017

Chris Bertoia with football player

Written by Chris Bertoia (BA '05)

My experience at Waterloo as a student was amazing!  I wouldn't trade my degree; the lifelong friendships I gained, and most importantly the lessons I learned as a member of our Football program for anything! On top of the great education I also had the privilege to be a member of two provincial Yates Cup Championships and a team that competed in four straight championship games.

This fall I enter my 3rd year as the Head Football Coach of this great University, I also enter this campaign winless as a head coach.  In a world that glorifies success and is based on results, I have failed to date.  Not from lack of effort, do not mistake me for a failure. Nobody internalizes the losses more than me, nobody places pressure on me like me!  Building a football program is much like building a business, there are many people and variables that all must align to build sustainable success. 

During our quest to build a great football program.  I’ve been blessed with wisdom and knowledge from my interactions with many people on our campus and our alumni.  The common denominator I have learned from all of them is that when you H.O.P.E (Have Only Positive Expectations) and you work tirelessly at something you love, the scoreboard will change.  Keeping our focus on winning each day is our belief and trust in the process.

Our University administration and athletic department has demonstrated an unprecedented commitment level to enhancing our students overall experience since I arrived here in 2015.  With the SLC/PAC expansion construction underway and future developments at our North campus facility (including a field house) on the docket, the future of this University is outstanding!  It’s my duty to educate our alumni of the great strides this University is taking to set itself apart from the rest.

I’m humbled each day to lead my alma-maters football program.  It’s an exciting time for our football program this season.  We have recruited excellent student-athletes.  We have put the work and effort in to finally turn the corner to victories.  We have the necessary support in place to sustain success.

Chris Bertoia giving a speech

The statement “Rome wasn’t built in a day” applies to what’s happening on campus with our football program.  I encourage you as a fellow Warrior to embrace the change! Please contact myself or our Athletic Director Roly Webster if you want more information on our evolving athletic department.

I encourage you to come back to campus for Reunion weekend, catch a game, reconnect with our University and friends. We need you on campus and at our games. If we play in your area, come to the game.   If you can’t get here, write us a letter that we can share with the team.  If you see a potential recruit in your area, let us know. If you can support the football program or athletic department financially, please do so.

There is much work to be done to get this program to an OUA Championship level.  Your help and support will be a big part of turning this program around.  Build the “Bandwagon”, don’t just jump on it!  From one proud alumnus to another!