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On The Big Show With Matt Perrault - Media or Fan Perspective?

Earlier tonight I was interviewed on The Big Show - 590 AM radio in Omaha - about the Nebraska yearbook 'A Sea of Red'. - Here is the Audio Link.

At one point the host, Matt Perrault, asked me the question 'when you were writing did you feel like 'oh this is me talking like a fan' or did you let your fan voice be heard.... because there's a difference between speaking like a fan and looking at it from a media perspective."

I wasn't 100% sure what he was asking at the time, and I stumbled through the answer. On the drive home, I got to thinking about it a little further. I believe what he was asking is this:

"When you're writing for a publication, how do you handle the line between being a homer and being what a journalist aspires to be, which is objective?"

I've never considered myself a journalist, even back when I was writing a lot in in the computer industry, just so you understand that. But Perrault's question deserves a better answer than the one I gave on air. To do that I'd have to start by mentioning a goal I always had in mind when I decided to put together the book, namely, that is was going to something that covered a broad range of Nebraska football issues from different perspectives - some of them that may not be what Husker fans want to hear.

This is something very different than looking at things from solely as a fan. As a fan, I want Nebraska football to go 10-2 this season, beat Missouri, win the Big 12 North and play in the Big 12 title game. I (we, including all of the other writers included) could have made up all sorts of reasons as to why this will happen and made them sound good. We could have drank the kool-aid and said that the 2008 team is destined for glory and greatness, but we didn't do that for one specific reason:

It wouldn't have been honest.

I do believe that good writers seek the truth. Sometimes, especially when you're blogging, you're just letting it all hang out or having fun, which I hope we do a lot here at CN. And sometimes, writing becomes something where you're trying to figure out what's going on within a specific issue and what you get out of it may be something you never expected nor really what you intended originally to say.

And that's the difference between writing from a media perspective and writing from the standpoint of a fan - something along those lines is what I should have stated as an answer for Mr. Perrault, but I'm not quick enough to do that during a radio interview.

I believe (as I stated) that you could make the case for Nebraska being 3-9 or 9-3 next season and I stand behind that statement. Maybe that's the most beautiful thing about this upcoming season - just watching what's going to happen. Are they going to pull themselves together and be the Nebraska team we want them to be, or is the confidence going to fail them as they fall apart again this season? No one can answer that right now, not the fans, nor the pundits. Not even the coaches or the players themselves. Like I said, it's going to be a fun season watching it all play out.

Incidentally, Mrs Corn Nation listened to it late tonight and laughed at the part where I said I try to set my expectations for each season at a reasonable level so that I'm not disappointed. She laughed because she knows come August 30th that all level of 'reasonable' will fly out the window as it does at the beginning of every bloody Nebraska football season that I can remember....