for the brief column drought. I am as unnerved, disturbed, and perturbed
as the next person. I’ve also been traveling a lot, relative to
my new book, including a jaunt to Alaska (where, sadly, I finally found
an area that appeared to be a Husker-free-zone – no watch parties,
no radio affiliates, etc.).
A few weeks
back, I didn’t write the following fact in my post-USC column, but
I’ll share it now. Leaving the stadium the night of our loss to
the Trojans was the first time I’d ever gone to a Husker game and
felt like I wanted my money back. The best part of that game — the
part Bill Callahan doesn’t control — was the pre-game atmosphere.
Yes, USC has
been the monster program of the past five years, Stanford beat them. So
Not that I
want to relive what happened at Missouri, but, well, okay I’ll be
brief. The running game was absent. Again, the loss of Brandon Jackson
from last year has left us entirely dull and unimpressive running the
football against teams that have equal (or superior) talent. The pass
attempts on 3rd and 1 and 3rd and 2 never cease to amaze me. What does
this offense need in order get one or two yards running the ball on 3rd
down? A six-star running back? An all-NFL line?
And the defense…wow…we
looked like we were playing the Indianapolis Colts. Some Missouri player
talks trash before the game about beating the Huskers by three touchdowns…the
Huskers brush it off…MU proceeds to win by five touchdowns.
How is it possible
that at Nebraska, the defense once proudly known as the Blackshirts now
gives up 40 points half the time they take the field? When does the “blame
Solich/give Callahan more time” line exhaust its statute of limitations?
there has been a lot of soul searching in Nebraska this week. If things
don’t change, there will be a lot more.
I’ve done a little of it myself. I’ve discovered that, without
really realizing it until now, I’ve always viewed good football
from the Nebraska Cornhuskers as some sort of entitlement. It shouldn’t
be that way. I’m simply a fan. I may be a dismayed fan these day
and I call it like I see it. But certainly, no one “owes”
me anything — players, coaches, or otherwise.
I simply cannot
relate to people who feel the need to boo 18 to 22 year old college students
playing a game. Even struggling coaches deserve respect — maybe
not contract renewals, but some basic human respect. That’s my $.02
worth right now, for better or for worse.
be able to watch, but I hope the team “brings it” on Saturday.
Last year, I thought we were the better team against Oklahoma St., but
we still managed to get beat. This season, we might be equal. The Huskers
have talent. Do they have the will?
hoping Husker fans who have class turn out in droves to scream for the
scarlet and cream. The team will need each home game this year (more than
any since ’05) to simply make a bowl.
voice of the Scarlet Commentary is Jeffrey Leever, a Nebraska
native who now writes for an advertising agency in Kansas
City. He is a 1994 graduate of the University of Nebraska
(Kearney) and author of the suspense novels Dark
Friday and Even
has been known to include a tribute to Tommie Frazier and
other Nebraska references in his novels. His website is www.jeffreyleever.com.