"We will win next Friday night," Chapin said, referring to the annual battle for the Carroll County Cup.
The talented junior didn't disappoint the Bobcats or their faithful fans, racking up 236 total yards and scoring three touchdowns.
Chapin was visibly upset after the shutout loss. You could see it in his eyes that he truly believed Berryville was better than it showed against the Eagles in week one. During the conversation, Chapin alluded to the fact that this year's team was better. They worked hard during the off-season. They had turned a corner and wanted to see results from that effort.
But to guarantee a win against a cross-town rival is like sticking your foot in a bear trap -- you run the risk of severing something that you need. In Chapin's case, the risk of putting that bulletin-board material out there put a target squarely on his back. But the risk was worth the reward.
Berryville coach Eric Daniel said Chapin was out of character when he made that statement. He said Chapin is a competitor but not one to boast or call attention to himself.
After carrying the ball 30 times for 200 yards and two touchdowns and catching a touchdown pass from Cody Powell for a third score, Chapin backed up every word he said and then some.
And I agree with Daniel. Chapin does not appear to be a boastful soul. He was emotional in the post-game interview and gave credit to his teammates at every turn. It was never an "I" situation -- only a "we".
He also gave credit to his grandmother, who passed away just before school resumed. Obviously, Chapin had an awesome relationship with his grandmother. That, in and of itself, shows character beyond what can be seen on any football field. Kids who honor their parents, and in this case grandparents, are sure to be faithful to family, leading me to believe their principals are in the right place.
So Chapin guaranteed a win. He also delivered. He ran with intensity I had not seen this year, from any running back at any school. He ran with passion and purpose. He bounced off guys all night, refusing to go down after the first, second, and sometimes third hit. He hit holes with authority and even created a few when they weren't there.
Here's a stat for you. In 30 carries, Chapin was not stopped for no gain or a loss, not once. That's not to say he wasn't hit in the backfield a few times because he was. But the determination he possessed that night was obvious. He was on a mission.
After all, he had to back up what he said. My mom used to say, "Don't let your mouth write a check your butt can't cover." Well, Chapin wrote the check and cashed it with funds left in the coffers. He even got stronger as the game entered its waning moments.
Coaches will tell you that a positive approach to the game provides a foundation for success. Chapin used it to perfection. He motivated himself and the rest of the Bobcats and lit a fire under them that Green Forest couldn't extinguish.
The Bobcats won the Super Bowl, breaking an 11-game losing streak along the way. Lincoln comes to town this week with a 3-0 record. Berryville will be looking to stop their momentum and continue to prove that the Bobcats are indeed back.
Another win this week is in the cards if Chapin and company can wrangle the Wolves at their door. And after seeing what a little positive momentum can do, I'm sure Chapin will have a few more followers who believe as much as he does that Berryville can compete in every game.
After all, the only difference between Chapin and Champion is mo -- as in momentum. And Chapin definitely has mo on his side.
Chan Davis is the sports editor for the Carroll County News.
He can be reached at email@example.com or 870-654-2742.