The word "Monmouth" last season became a sort-of shorthand for a humbling experience, a game that should have gone much different than it actually did.
It was usually used in the context of:
"Don't pull another Monmouth."
"Lehigh's been doing pretty great - but they have to be careful not to have another Monmouth."
The memory of last year's loss to the Jersey Hawks stung particularly hard, because it had ramifications that slowed the recognition of Lehigh as a legitimate title contender. Wile their loss last season wasn't stated as a reason why the Mountain Hawks didn't earn a home game in the FCS Playoffs, it was the one, big blemish on Lehigh's record that may have prevented them from being in consideration for a possible seed (and, by extension, at least one home game).
And yet, last year's Monmouth loss also was important in that the loss in that first game of the year seemed to galvanize the Mountain Hawks, sending a potent message that winning every game was going to be hard and nothing was going to come easy. The lessons learned from that game carried through the season, and, in a way, set up everything good that was to come.
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