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Big 12 Roundtable - Getting Personal

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It was my turn to come up with the questions. On Friday, I'll summarize the results of the other Big 12 bloggers, picking out what I think are the best responses and post them here with a follow up.

1. What did you learn, if anything, about your team on opening weekend? More specifically, did you see anything that brought complete elation or utter disappointment?

The offensive line looks like an offensive line that we can love again. Every Husker fan who watched that game should be lated at the job they did. The Huskers ran for over 400 yards and pummeled an inferior opponent in the process, bringing back memories of Dr. Tom Osborne's Husker teams.

I don't think I'd call Keller's performance 'utterly' disappointing, but it was disappointing. He didn't look through his progressions, and stared down his receivers. One of his plays like this resulted in Nevada's only touchdown on an interception return.

BTW, did anyone notice Colorado's Terrence Wheatley throwing up the Nebraska Blackshirt's Skull & Bones symbol after picking off a pass in the end zone to seal a win in overtime? Blashphemer! Heretic!

2.  20 years from now, someone will ask you "Where Were You When Appalachian State beat Michigan?". Describe what you were doing at the time, your reaction.

I called my provider - Dish Network - and asked whether or not they'd reached an agreement with Big Ten Network. The nice young lady on the phone, obviously reading a script, informed me that BTN had rejected their offer, so there was no way I was going to see the game. Since it was impossible to get the game on the tube, I joined the game thread over at BON, and also joined in the comment thread at the kitty blog, mgoblog. I tried unsuccessfully to find the audio online.

It was seeing the comments by the Michigan faithful at mgoblog I learned that the final field goal had been blocked and nearly returned for a touchdown. Not real climatic, but it certainly says something about the state of college football coverage these days. That and given my meager existence, I felt like I had friends at BON for a little while. It was special.

My reaction was initially one of "Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha!" and then I remember how much crap I get after a Nebraska loss when walking into work on Monday. I can't imagine what out of state Michigan alums are going to go through this week. This season? For the rest of their lives? Eternity?  Bwaaa haaaa!

3. Given the big event of this past weekend, what's the worst you've ever felt about your team?

I still think about how we got screwed in the 1982 Penn State game, but that was due to lousy refereeing, not because we sucked. The 1987 Oklahoma game was horrible because expectations were so high.

These don't compare to the 1992 Iowa State game. We'd just beaten the tar out of eighth-ranked Colorado 52-7, and thirteenth-ranked Kansas 49-7, so everyone thought we would walk into Ames and destroy them. (Read the link above for the full story about the game).

I was on the field, watching our Huskers with their heads down while they were leaving. I was screaming at them to get their heads up, punching them in the chest, telling them that they were still going to the Orange Bowl and they could ruin someone else's season. It was such a high from the week before to the end of that game. That sucked.

The 2002 36-14 loss to Iowa State was nearly as bad because the Cyclones kicked our ass. We were never in the game, the Husker sidelines was lifeless and you could see they were defeated. Seppo Evayware was screaming at other players to stop sitting on the bench, running around and trying to get them going. No one responded to him. It was clear we were lost as a team. I ended up singing the Iowa State fight song at a pizza joint later to a group of ISU fans. They thought I'd lost a bet. Fact is, I was disgusted with how we looked.

4. Take a classic - like Homer's Odyssey, Lord of the Flies, Little Women, or, heck, even the latest Simpsons Movie and tell me how it relates to your team this season.

Boltar a Husker fan? No, probably rooted for the Buffs.

I learn a lot from these roundtables. From this one I learned that if you're going to make up the questions, you should have a good answer for them. I thought this question would be interesting, but it turns out I don't have any good answers for it, so instead of going with one good answer, I have a bunch of really bad answers:

Husker fans The life story for many rural Nebraskans goes like this. Born in small town, graduate, leave small town to attend college somewhere else (like UNL), then graduate from said college and leave the state because there aren't enough jobs available. We spend the rest of our days wandering through expatriation running into other people wearing Husker attire and asking them what small town in Nebraska they're from. I equate that to "Battlestar Galactica" because the basic theme of that show was of a lost tribe constantly looking for home - not the new "Battlestar Galactica" but the old one where the bad guys looked bad and the good guys had great hair.

Bill Callahan Sticking with the cheesy sci-fi theme, "Robinson Crusoe on Mars" fits here because I can only imagine what Callahan thought when he first arrived at Nebraska. It wasn't like he showed up and knew that every bit of his wardrobe had to include red. That he couldn't call Oklahomans f'in hillbillies without realizing it was a reflection upon Nebraskans, or make the comment that a loss to Colorado "was only one game, one season" when it was the end of an incredibly long streak of winning seasons he'd just broken. He's had to learn these things through the journey he's undertaken.

But he's about to break through his previous challenges. It appears that he's overcome great barriers and could be on the verge of staying at Nebraska for years to come. He lived through 2006. He'll live through 2007. 2008?

Steve Pederson The obvious choice here would be "The Terminator", right?

Husker Football I kept trying to come up with a suitable find for this, and unfortunately I've spent the last 15 hours trying to recover a badly crashed server in my real job. It's going okay, it's just slow, tedious, work. Here's where I was going - an empire that's known little defeat, turn it upside down and see how everyone reacts. That's about where we are right now with Husker football. Lots of conflict, even now, but in the end I know there's a happy ending somewhere. You give this one a shot.

5. It wasn't just by accident you got here. Somewhere, some time, there was someone who influenced you to become a fan of your team. Tell that story.

It wasn't a someone, it was the holidays. It was Thanksgiving as a kid, with our family gathered around the TV. We'd lose to Oklahoma and everyone would be so upset. At that time, I never really understood why they'd be so mad, probably because the idea that the Huskers were bad never entered into my mind. I felt the same way about Oklahoma then that I do now - they won because they were evil and everyone knows the Devil gets to rule the earth.

My home town (Curtis) has a fall festival. The Husker game would be playing on the radio, and as the excitement in Lyle Bremser's voice would rise, everyone would stop what they were doing and listen for the play's outcome. Even the games would seen to stop, the rings at a ring toss frozen in mid-air. As a kid, I was enthralled with the idea that some guy could stop time just by talking over the radio, but if you ever heard Bremser's voice, you know what I'm talking about.

I hate to admit this publicly, but I didn't become completely obsessive about Husker football until I left the state in 1987 to move to Minnesota. I was always a fan, but I never truly appreciated the Huskers until I got to experience Minnesota Golden Gopher football. Mrs Corn Nation and I had Gophers season tickets for three years. I thought it'd be like Nebraska football - shows how naive I was. I quit buying them because I got tired of Gophers fans telling me to shit down and shut up.

There is a complete lack of passion in Minnesota for college football. It's like it doesn't exist here. That emptiness left me yearning to fill the void by finding everything Husker. Hell, I was even on the board of the Minnesotans for Nebraska alumni group for a while.

Big 12 Offensive Player of the Week:

Marlon Lucky, Junior Running Back, Nebraska - 30 carries, 233 yards, three TD's, three for 33 yards, receiving, one TD.

Close - Graham Harrell, quarterback, Texas Tech. Harrell was 44 of 59 attempts for 419 yards and four TD's. Homerism takes over for me.

Big 12 Defensive Player of the Week:
Jordon Dizon, Senior Linebacker, Colorado, 15 solo tackles, five assisted, one forced fumble. Guy was all over the field.