We will not surrender’

Ask head coach Jerry Glanville what his expectations for this past season were, and he will tell you this: “Whatever they were we didn’t meet them.”

Ask head coach Jerry Glanville what his expectations for this past season were, and he will tell you this: “Whatever they were we didn’t meet them.”

Ask Glanville what he thought would have gone better, and this will be his answer: “I thought we would play better in every area.”

Ask Glanville what the Vikings need to do next year to improve on their 4-7 season, and the reply will be rather short and to the point. “Everything.”

With that said, it immediately becomes clear that Glanville is not thrilled with the outcome of Portland State’s recently completed 11-game journey that included an 0-5 record on the road, a wide assortment of mental lapses and more than a few head-scratching moments.

But even though his second season at Portland State was not everything he had envisioned, wanted or desired, Glanville is far from throwing in the towel.

His message is a powerful one.

“We will not surrender,” Glanville said.

With much of his focus over the next few months centered around recruiting–“we’ll be in five states over 18 days and in four homes a day,”–Glanville is steadfast that the road to success for the Vikings lies in continuing to develop the current product.

That is, bettering those players who already wear the spear-adorned helmets and black home jerseys.

“There is only one way you can count on to improve: within,” Glanville said. “The only guarantee is to make the outside linebacker better, or make your center better.”

One area Glanville is especially zealous about enhancing is the play upfront, and that means playing better along both the offensive and defensive lines.

Glanville said the Vikings won upfront in a couple games this season, but the veteran head coach contends a few victories is not nearly enough to contend for a conference title.

“The people that win the Big Sky win upfront every game,” Glanville said. “You got to get the offensive and defensive lines to be totally dedicated in the offseason. That means becoming bigger, stronger and faster.”

Despite the disappointment of finishing tied for sixth place in the Big Sky, Glanville said he witnessed a few bright spots for the Vikings in Saturday’s 24-21, season-ending victory over Northern Colorado.

Drew Hubel performed superbly, throwing for 343 yards and three touchdowns on 28 of 36 passing, which raised a lot of eyebrows, including Glanville’s.

Glanville said he saw Hubel throw some “lasers” against the Bears, which gives him optimism for where the Vikings’ quarterback play is headed for the future. He actually thought Hubel’s lasers were more impressive than his 623-yard performance against Eastern Washington earlier in the season.

Freshman safety Cody Worthen is another young player Glanville is placing a lot of stock in to improve over the offseason and return even more polished.

“I love the way every time Cody hits someone, something good happens,” Glanville said.

Glanville said he also expects junior linebacker Ryan Pedersen to bounce back after suffering several injuries to his finger, thumb and wrist on his left hand late in the season.

For the most part, Glanville is patient with the development of his team.

While he said he wishes Portland State could undergo a complete turnaround with the snap of a finger or whisk of a wand, he understands that rebuilding a football program does not work like that, but rather requires a methodical, long-term approach.

Never short of comedic devices, Glanville maintains that rebuilding at Portland State is analogous to eating an elephant.

“How do you eat an elephant?” Glanville said. “You eat it just one bite at a time.”