Discussion in 'Football' started by NewYorksker, Jun 12, 2018.
The only "more" is that the culture on the team had already been set in McBride's latter years anyway. The guys knew how to work, knew how to support one another and work together for a goal. Their motivation and work ethic was at high levels, so choosing the most talented 11 from that group and granting them Blackshirts was much less risky.
Today's team is a work in progress. The coaches (and Charlie and the former players they interviewed, including Barrett Ruud) must feel that an extra piece of drive and accountability is needed at this time, and that the granting of Blackshirts can play into that. Who knows, maybe this process will evolve into coaches being able to just give the 'shirts to defensive starters (though that group may differ series to series), once the culture has been properly established.
I do appreciate that possibility of divisiveness over giving out the shirts to a select few - but I would also submit that the potential for the divisiveness also existed between the top 11 and the rest of the defensive unit...any way you slice it, that potential is there - and it's up to team leadership to make sure that doesn't take over.
UCF's motto last year was "One Team, One Heartbeat!" And I think most would agree that achieving team unity was a goal that was accomplished by that group. We can only hope they get there at Nebraska, too.
The Blackshirts are not a team award.
The tradition of the blackshirt practice jersey evolved greatly over the years. In the 60's they were used to simply to identify the starting defense to the coaching staff. By the championship years of the 90's, the starting D and other key defensive players and even punters earned them based on leadership and performance. (Jesse Kosch was awarded one in '94-'97.) They became a badge of honor, a symbol of dominance, and a goal for all defensive players to reach.
I'll trust the input given by Charlie McBride, Scott Frost, and Barrett Ruud to Coach Chin to determine how to approach the Blackshirt tradition.
Trust the process.
I'm sure the process will evolve from individuals earning, losing their Blackshirt, etc....to the entire Defense getting blackshirts at some point. Maybe this year, maybe next.
We were so broken that it will take some time to not only build on everything else, but also this great tradition.
Sometimes a punter, sometimes not. That would be more, no?
Exactly right. And that will take a little time.
Wrong. Traditionally, with the exception of a few of Bo's experiments, they have been awarded to the starting defense. Yes, over time sometimes a few additional shirts were awarded to deserving backup's, or special team players, or those that started in different alignments...but, it has always been a team award for the starting defensive unit. Some of these additional or honorary shirts were even given post-season. This is true and even those denying it today know it is so. We've had some pretty crappy defenses that all had 11 starters with Blackshirts...it is simply fact.
I know it gets some folks mad when the defense sucks...it gets me mad too. But a tradition is a tradition, until it's not. The new staff can do what they want, it's their choice, but they ARE dishonoring the tradition even if their defenses are stellar. I will point this out to SF. BTW, just because Chin/SF spoke with McBride and others doesn't mean that he told them to do it this way. Further, McBride, who had plenty of poor/mediocre defenses wearing blackshirts, is not the expert on the tradition, those folks are nearly all dead. I'd prefer they just say they are temporarily suspending the Blackshirt tradition until the defense is up to par than do something as stupid as making a blackshirt an award to an individual...that will be nothing but divisive.
I think it's a nice tradition, but its inception was simply so the defense would wear a different color from the offense. Devaney dispatched a coach to run down to Lawlor's Sporting Goods to get some penny jerseys. He tried to get about 25 black ones, but there were only about 11 black ones available. So the coach bought black ones for the starters, and yellow ones for the second team. That's it.
It's grown to be more important to the guys who played after the '60's (and the fans), but really, the reason the starters are the ones wearing the black jerseys is because Lawlor's didn't stock more black penny jerseys. Really. So don't talk about some mythical tradition that hasn't been altered: it has always been changed over the years. In my opinion, that's what makes it an awesome tradition. It's REAL and ALIVE.
EDIT: Also, I love that people care about it enough to debate the right way to do it. That means that the fans are engaged and that's almost always a good thing. GBR!
The Blackshirts are a great tradition and I think every coach has a right to put their stamp on it and award them or withhold them as they see fit.
It is not a team award. Its earned as individuals and lost as individuals.
Yeah a huh, traditionally earned by the 11 individuals that are known as the:
Nebraska First team defense (changes all the time)
But, this year...you might be right, they seem intent on shaming last year's starters to get individual motivation going. Hate to see them drag the Blackshirt tradition into it, but I suppose they think that will make it easier. Regardless, they can do what they want and I am all for them being successful.
Oh my. You are in quite a state. Yes, in the most basic terms Blackshirts are the starting D for NU, but it has morphed into much, much more than that as coaches and players from the 90's have indicated many times. But feel free to go with the basic premise for the purpose of your rant.
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