“We talk about how we want to be the first team at Tuttle that's ever gone to state, and do something that no one else has ever done here,” junior guard Tyler Lester said. “It was a big relief having Coach back.
“On Tuesday night, we played without him, and I think we were worrying about him. A blood transfusion is a pretty big deal, even though he was saying, ‘Aww, it's nothing.' Having him back on the bench meant a lot.”
The next step in the Tigers' state tournament pursuit comes at 8 p.m. Thursday, when Tuttle hosts a regional winner's bracket game. A win that night guarantees them a spot in the area tournament March 6-8. Three straight wins will put them in the Big House.
With a 21-2 record, Tuttle has actually been flying under the radar much of the season, only recently cracking the top 10. Now ranked eighth in Class 4A, the Tigers are ready for their shot at a state tournament run.
And Meuser, with the familiar smile that couldn't be any bigger, is ready to enjoy the ride.
“I've got great kids on this team, just quality people. I want to see them succeed,” he said. “I've always said it when I was healthy that Jesus is my savior, and whatever he needs — you know, he might need a coach, I don't know.
“I've got great doctors. I've got great kids on my team. I've got my family here with me. I'm a blessed man.”