It's amazing how a victory can change the complexion and confidence of a team.
The thrill of a win creates a closer bond between teammates, boosts moral, and nearly instantaneously spawns a new chemical composition of a team that previously didn't exist.
Suddenly, the team collectively pushes a little harder, carries themselves with their head held a little higher, and all of a sudden, the talented team on paper that has been hiding beneath the surfaces emerges.
This is the long-winded explanation of what is referred to in the sports as "momentum."
Although it would be easy to get carried away in this column and be psychoanalytical of all technical and chemical nuances of the personality of a team, sports writers aren't scientists.
Even though it's close enough to Halloween and temptation to bust out the scientific white coats is there, we'll refrain.
No doubt, Minot State has experienced a reversal of fortune and Levi Freidt's game-saving tackle at the 1-yard line yard changed the team chemistry.
You can feel the lighter mood as you walk into practice.
It's like winning gave the football team the proverbial "monkey off their back," and has spawned a whole sense of confidence that wasn't there before.
The Beavers indeed have done a 180 and it isn't so much an attitude change as it's just elation that is one of the most powerful drugs in the world.
Speaking of alternate universes, this sports writer got to experience an alternate universe at the football team's Thursday practice at Herb Parker Stadium.
During the Beavers traditional contest at the conclusion of Thursday's practice, they had a wiffle ball home-run contest. The object of the contest was to simply try and hit a home run into the brand new stands that were just commerated with a ribbon-cutting ceremony by athletic direcor Rick Hedberg, football coach Paul Rudolph, women's soccer coach Jason Spain, and chamber ambassadors of Minot State, Russ Gagnon and Dee Johnson.
Rudolph called the action like the classic 1960 home-run derby television-show umpire "one out, two outs, three outs."
He also conducted the post-game interview in the straight forward style of Mark Scott.
During the contest, coach Rudolph suddenly said, "Blasco, you're up next."
The tables were turned.
Rudolph and assistant coach Andy Heitkamp were the journalists and yours truly was the subject. On the first pitch, this journalist proved why he was a sports writer and not an athlete. Contact was made but it didn't quite have any umph behind it. On the next pitch, this journalist was fooled and wiffed. The next pitch was the third and final out with another ground ball that didn't quite have the distance.
In the aftermath of the contest, Rudolph asked the questions.
"We noticed on the first pitch you were trying to change your batting stance," Rudolph commented in a typical reporter's fashion.
"Yeah, I was trying to model my batting stance after Mickey Mantle, and I didn't quite have the technique," Blasco said.
"On the second pitch, it looked like he kind of pulled a string on you," Rudolph asked again, not missing on reporter mode.
"Yeah, he threw me quite a curve ball on that second pitch and fooled me," Blasco responded.
Enough of the third person.
The point has been made that, like me as the subject and Rudolph as the journalist, the Beavers now have a chance to enter an alternate universe that is in sharp contrast to their first five games of the season.
Could they take this momemtum and win out? That remains to be seen.
But if they win this week like they are predicted to do, momentum has an odd way of turning around 180 degrees, and that changes the outlook on their whole season. If they win four games this season, it will be considered nothing more than remarkable. That isn't an indictment on MSU's football team in any sense; it's more of a compliment to its top-notch A-plus schedule.
And Rudolph has all the confidence his team can do just that.
"Certainly, we believe (we can win out)," Rudolph said. "We'll have to take this one first."
Two in a row is a hot streak, three in a row is a winning streak, and to quote the movie Major League II and its coaching character Lou Brown: "It has happened before."
Look for the Beavers to live in a parallel universe the rest of the season, if they win against South Dakota Mines today.
Jason Blasco is the Minot State University beat writer for The Minot Daily News. He can be contacted by email at email@example.com.