HUSKER DAN'S ARMY
Readers: As many of you know, HDA began when a young soldier, stationed in Iraq, wrote me two years ago requesting Husker memorabilia that he could hand out to Iraqi children. Husker fans responded enthusiastically to his request.
Since then, there have been many other soldiers who have written asking for Husker game day tapes, videos and Husker memorabilia. Together with the help of the Northeast Kansans For Nebraska (http://neks4nebraska.org/), we have put together a program designed to help our soldiers get Husker Care Packages. HuskerVision, under the direction of Shot Kleen, has made it possible for our soldiers to receive game day DVDs at no charge to the soldiers. The Husker Elvises have donated autographed posters; the Red Zone in Omaha is giving HDA a special discount for Husker items and is providing free shipping to the Middle East for all the packages we send.
For every $100.00 we receive in donations, we send a Husker Care Package to a needy soldier. Donations to HDA have been steady, but haven't been enough to handle all the requests.
What is interesting is that family members of soldiers who are serving in the Middle East have donated money to The Cause. Now, think about that for a minute, if you will. Their loved ones are already in harm's way and the family members are willing to donate money to HDA. It seems to me that these family members are already making enough sacrifices.
Husker fans, are you listening? Please help out this great cause with your donations. Go to the Northeast Kansans For Nebraska web site, to see how you can become a member of Husker Dan's Army.
The following are some messages we've received about Husker Dan's Army:
(From Sgt. Joshua Howard [Iraq] to Gary McGirr [NEKansans For Nebraska])
We got the games...they are awesome. Thank you so much Gary.
From some other Husker soldiers:
Just wanted to let you guys know that 4 out of 5 guys reported that they got the DVDs for LA Tech. Mission accomplished.
My husband is currently serving in Iraq and asked that I find a way to get him tapes of Husker football games. I found your name and list of the articles that you had written on the Internet. I am very impressed by the support that you all have given the military serving overseas. I hope that I am not imposing by asking for tapes of the games (possibly some memorabilia) to be sent to my husband and his fellow soldiers in Iraq. He has limited access to the Internet or he would have requested this himself.
Love and Peace,
P.S. Jennifer said Toby would love to hear from Husker fans. His email address is: Toby.Davis1@us.army.mil
His mailing address is:
SSG Toby Davis
C Co./ 4-23 IN Regt.
APO AE 09322
Jennifer: Bless you and your husband for the sacrifices you and your family are making. We'll get Toby taken care of as soon as we can.
(The following was sent to Betty in Lincoln, CA by one of the soldiers in Afghanistan. Betty was one of the first to contribute to HDA.)
Thanks in advance for your donation. I look forward to receiving the shipment. We are stationed deep in SE Afghanistan training the Afghan Army. When the Afghans get trained to defend their country, we go home. The Taliban are very active in this area and we face danger quite a few days out of the month. Our forward operating base is under construction. We have very few amenities. We have no TV and cook our own meals out of a building that looks like a hunting cabin. Life here is hard. The wind blows the dust constantly. The days are hot and it is hard to get washed away and are slow going. Nothing will raise the spirits more here than to enjoy some college football...especially Nebraska football. Thanks again. We are looking forward to receiving your package.
Major Doug Bogenhagen
41st Brigade Combat Team
Army National Guard
BIG WED WAP-UP
Troy was the perfect cure a Husker hangover that resulted in the aftermath of last week's loss at Southern Cal. All week, I sensed that to the players and coaches, the Troy game couldn't come fast enough.
One of the characteristics of Tom Osborne's teams was their ability, after tough losses, to play intense and inspired football the next week. I'm not suggesting this program is at the level of TO's, but the Huskers added an exclamation point to the win Saturday night in Lincoln. Concerns about the Huskers going into a tailspin after last week's loss to the "other" Trojans, quickly vanished on the opening drive of the game. The Huskers never let up all night and cruised to a surprising 56-0 win over a reasonably good Troy team.
The line blasted open holes big enough for Rosie O'Donnell to run through. Marlon Lucky showed great speed and change of direction that left defenders grasping at thin air.
To be sure, it was a great night for Husker football. There is something special, almost magical about a Husker night game in Lincoln. Rain had been predicted, but despite 3 or 4 minutes of very light mist, the night was perfect.
I thought that two things would happen in the Troy game that night. First, one of the running backs would have a breakout game and second, the Huskers would come out of the chute breathing fire. Both things happened.
Mrs. Husker Dan was going to go to the game with me, but because of the weather reports, decided not to go. So what's a guy to do with an extra ticket? Sell it, of course.
I knew was going to have to sit by myself (awwwww), but I'd come to the game with a couple of buddies, so the thought of sitting by myself was fine. I made it to my seat in the East Stadium and sat next to a young lady named Erin who had bought my ticket from the guy I sold it to. It turns out that she had come to the game with her family and found herself having to sit by herself, too. Her family was in the West Stadium.
Erin said she grew up in Clarinda, Iowa, but now lives in Des Moines. She told me that her dad made sure she was raised in the proper Cornhusker fashion. Erin and I had a good time yelling, cheering and high-fiving each other after each great play made by the Huskers.
Memorial Stadium during game day, is a great place to be. To be sure, there are no strangers. Wherever you sit, there are many Husker fans with whom you can share your Husker experience. Truly, there is no place like Nebraska.
Erin admitted that she had never heard of Huskerpedia or Husker Dan. So I quickly got her up to speed! She promised to become a Huskerpedia regular. To Erin's dad: You have raised a good Husker fan, but more importantly, you have raised a very fine young lady.
FROM THE EMAIL BAG:
I was perusing the Huskerpedia site a while back, and saw some kudos you threw my way. I appreciate the kind words. We'll be doing some more humorous Husker profiles within the next month. Oh, and if you ever want to plug my blog, go right ahead: http://www.ketv.com/ssb/index.html See? You pat someone on the back, and then he wants a massage. Best of luck and thanks.
KETV Channel 7
Matt: Consider it done.
A HUSKER DAN IMPOSTOR?
Kent Pavelka, who used to be the voice of Husker basketball and football for many years, was just named the new voice of Husker basketball, succeeding Randy Lee. Kent wrote me saying he read something recently on a basketball blog from a guy who calls himself Husker Dan. The impostor's comments were not particularly flattering of Kent. I told Kent that if he ever saw anything posted on any blog, it did not come from me. I don't look at blogs and I NEVER would post anything on one. I barely even have time to do this column. So if you find something on a blog from someone claiming to be Husker Dan, the dude is an impostor.
Okay, so I messed up last week. I really, really do know how so spell Lyell Bremser's first name. Thank you very much.
HUSKER DAN SEZ
All week, Husker players and coaches have been downplaying this Saturday's Big 12 opener with the Kansas Jayhawks. The Husker coaches are trying to get all of us to buy into the "we're not even thinking about the 40-15 loss last year at Lawrence" nonsense. You can bet the 40-15 score has been displayed prominently all week.
This is not going to be a revenge game for the Huskers, but rather a game of redemption. Credit the Jayhawks for playing a great game last year. But this year, the Huskers want to prove that last year was an aberration. The two programs find themselves this season, going in opposite directions. The Jayhawks are struggling, while the Huskers, who have gone 6-1 since the two teams met last year in Lawrence, are getting better each week.
Kansas will need to see a proctologist after this baby. Huskers will roll Saturday night to a jam-packed Memorial Stadium.