Albany Empire Head Coach Tom Menas and superstar wide receiver were on-air with us, Brian and Chrissy in the Morning on 107.7 GNA, Friday morning, one day before their NAL Championship Game versus the Columbus Lions on Saturday at 7pm at the TU Center.

These guys were a ton of fun.

We've interviewed Malachi a bunch of times, and have been become pretty friendly with him over the years, so we knew were going to get polite, well-thought-out, and very professional answers.

Not that Coach Menas' answers weren't professional and well-thought, they were all that and then some.

But he did say some things that kind of took us by surprise.  When asked about some of the pressures the team might face considering the magnitude of the game, he hesitated for 0.00 seconds before firing off a series of confidence-building quotes that many coaches would instinctually refrain from.

"I shared with Malachi on the way in (to the studio) that if we just play our best game, we'll win by four touchdowns."  At this point, I was kind of trying to bail him out.  Not that he shouldn't be confident, but I just didn't want him to feel like I was setting him up for some kind of trap that could be "bulletin board material" for the Columbus Lion locker room.

When I explained that I wasn't looking for a guarantee, and that "those things are foolish," the coach stopped me mid-sentence so he could double down.

"Well I'll guarantee it...absolutely, we're going to win," he boldly stated.  Adding, "What kind of leader would I be without saying that?"

Sounds to me like the kind of guy that players are willing to run through a brick wall for.  After hearing his confidence, - and feeling how dead-serious he was - Chrissy and I were more confident than ever that the Empire were in great hands heading into Saturday night's title game at the TU Center.

Menas didn't give a score prediction, but I'll make it now after hearing him:

Empire 77-Lions 43 

Check out the entire 3:30 interview here, including the portion about how I would "die" if I ever stepped on the field for a snap or two.

 

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