I know what many of you are thinking (and you know who you are): The Huskers were lucky to beat Michigan Saturday night because, like Braxton Miller last year in the Ohio State game, Michigan's star quarterback (Denard Robinson) had to leave the game and was replaced by an inept sub. And therefore, the narrative is that there should be an asterisk by the Huskers' 23-9 win Saturday night.
Rubbish. Balderdash (boy, I'm really getting foul-mouthed...).
No asterisk necessary. I will concede that while DR was in the lineup, Michigan was winning, not on the scoreboard (they trailed 7-3), but MU had a huge advantage in TOP. Had this advantage continued, theoretically, the Husker D could have run out of gas and the first half runs that were going for 2 or 3 yards, could have gone for 7, 8 or 9 yards in the second half against a tired Nebraska defense.
A MOOT POINT
That could have happened. And might not have. It doesn't matter. The fact is, we'll never know. All we know is that Nebraska played against the best players Michigan could put in the game and Nebraska won. End of story.
That Russell Bellomy (DR's RFr. backup) was ill prepared for the game is unfortunate for him. But that's life. "Ridin' high in April/Shot down in May." (You would also have thought that even the backup QB at a program like Michigan's would have been better prepared.)
BROOK AND THE TURMAN-ATOR
Husker fans know all too well about the importance of backup quarterbacks. Tom Osborne's first NC team (1994) was led (and saved) by a backup qb (Brook Berringer). And after BB got banged up midway through the season, Osborne had to go with third stringer, Matt Turman, to get the win at Kansas State.
And little is being said about QB Taylor Martinez limping off the field Saturday night. Or that Husker receiver Taariq Allen was badly injured on the first play of the game and didn't play another down. And what about the absence of the Huskers' Steady-Eddy running back, Rex Burkhead? He hasn't played in the last two games.
The short of it: Take the win and make no apologies.
OUTHOUSES AND PENTHOUSES
And wasn't it good to see the two players (Ameer Abdullah and Kenny Bell) each of whom fumbled a punt in the 29-28 win at Northwestern the week before, be the only two Huskers to score touchdowns Saturday night? From the outhouse to the penthouse in one week. And Taylor Martinez played tough. He had a fumble and one bad throw, but luckily, they didn't result in any Wolverine points. And it was fitting and proper that for the first time this season, BP handed out Blackshirts after the game.
This week's game at East Lansing could be similar to the Michigan game. Probably low scoring. Lots of defense. If the Huskers don't form a circular firing squad, they should be fine. MSU is a one point favorite. I'm going with the Huskers in a close one.
50 AND COUNTING
With this being the last year the Husker volleyball team will be playing in the venerable Coliseum, the old building brings back a vivid non-football memory.
In May of 1968, I was living in Lincoln and had an appointment on the UNL campus the day Bobby Kennedy was holding a rally at the Coliseum. He was running to be the Democratic presidential nominee. As I walked by the entrance to the Coliseum, I could hear him speaking to several hundred of his supporters. Kennedy was very popular, mostly for being JFK's younger brother and for his days he served as Kennedy's Attorney General.
(People old enough to remember, it was four and a half years earlier that President John Kennedy was assassinated in Dallas.)
Later that afternoon, I was in downtown Lincoln watching Kennedy's motorcade pass right by me as it made its way through a cavern of old buildings that resembled the Book Depository where Lee Harvey Oswald gunned down JFK in 1963. Seeing RFK riding unguarded in a convertible gave me a chilling flashback. Haven't we learned anything? I thought to myself.
And a few weeks later on June 6th, I was in North Platte on a business trip. When I woke up the next morning, I heard the tragic news. Bobby Kennedy had been assassinated at the Ambassador Hotel in Los Angeles.
And years later in 1974 while I was a musician in Los Angeles, I had a gig at the Ambassador Hotel. I was schlepping my drums, trying to find where I was supposed to set up. I made my way through a kitchen and into a ballroom. And then a chill came over me. The kitchen I had just walked through was where RFK was killed and the ballroom was where Kennedy made his last speech.
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