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Flakes: Volleyball Passes Test, Josh Brown and Gray Areas

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Flakes gets a little more serious than usual. Life is a game of inches. Never forget that.

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We experienced something very scary on the ranch a few days ago.

During harvest, ranchdude moves the cow herd into the middle of the farm. This is because the cows think tractors and pickups are there to feed them. During harvest, there are a lot of neighbors’ tractors and pickups on nearby roads and fields. There is also a lot more traffic than normal on our gravel roads.

By keeping the cows as far away from the roads as possible, we try to reduce the chance that anything will get out on the road in all that extra harvest-time traffic. That strategy has worked, mostly.

A few days ago, our neighbor’s teenage son was riding an ATV past our house shortly after dark. Our cattle are Angus. Black Angus. Black cattle are difficult to see after dark.

Fortunately the animal on the road was a calf (not a cow or bull) and our neighbor’s son is bruised, but OK. The ATV killed the calf on impact but the guard on front protected our son’s classmate from serious harm. The ATV is totaled.

Several calves had been aggravating us for a few days (before and since) with their ability to slip through fences. Everyone on the ranch had/has been dispatched at least once to chase calves and ranchdude is running ragged trying to figure where they were/are getting out. He was/is tightening loose wires, and testing electric fences. We are all on high alert. (verb-tense disagreement re: past/present in this paragraph is deliberate)

Our efforts weren’t good enough. We failed. It could have been worse, but it still was not good enough.

Sometimes, you just have to realize that you screwed up. And thank God you didn’t screw up worse.

Life is a game of inches. I know we like to say football or baseball is a game of inches, but what separates so much of humanity from one another is a small choice, a stroke of luck, or an unconscious decision to stand our ground. In our polarized society, we like to pretend that we are far away from "those people". We like to pretend there is a great distance between left/right, Republican/Democrat, Husker/Badger/Hawkeye, Daub/Rose-Ivey, Penn State and Baylor/everyone else.

The truth is that the gulf between humans with differing opinions is very small. We make insignificant stuff much bigger than it should be. The reality is that most humans are trying their best given what they know or have experienced.

Our recent ranch-level failure as well as several of the links today really made me think about how gray life can be. If you were six inches to one side or the other of certain situations, would your point of view change?

Corn Flakes

Kieron Williams transforms himself from frustrated backup to playmaking Husker starter - starherald.com: Football
Nebraska finished last season with cornerbacks Chris Jones and Joshua Kalu joining safety Nate Gerry in the starting secondary, which left the Huskers feeling good about three-fourths of their defensive backfield going into the winter. NU wasn’t sure who the other safety would be, or what he would do when he got there.

No. 1 Huskers bowling team places 5th in season opener | Sports | dailynebraskan.com
The Nebraska bowling team opened its 2016-17 season ranked No. 1 in the National Tenpin Coaches Association Preseason Poll.

Nebraska and Michigan Claim Big Ten Volleyball Player of the Week Plaudits Big Ten Conference Official Site
The Official Athletic Site of the B1G Conference - Nebraskas Amber Rolfzen, Justine Wong-Orantes and Kelly Hunter claim Player, Defensive Player and Setter of the Week honors; Michigans MacKenzi Welsh named Freshman of the Week

MILLER: Last weekend historic for Husker volleyball, Bob Devaney Sports Center | Sports | dailynebraskan.com
It’s not every weekend that three of the top four college volleyball teams in the country play each other. In fact, it’s usually in a little event called the Final Four.

No. 7 Huskers See Wisconsin Stadium as Their Proving Ground - ABC News
No. 7 Huskers See Wisconsin Stadium as Their Proving Ground

Josh Brown Section

Josh Brown, a former Husker kicker, was released from the New York Giants because of an investigation into the abuse of his ex-wife Molly. He has tried to differentiate himself by indicating his failures were not as bad as others and that he is seeking help. We (Jon and I) have posted for several months (in Flakes) about his situation without much (any) reaction (or much emphasis on our part). I found it interesting but wondered it he was treated differently on this blog because he was one of "our own".

Life is a game of inches. He could be sincere. Or not. He could have the ability to manage his mental illness. Or not. Will the help he needs be sufficient/timely or not?

New York Giants kicker Josh Brown issues statement about alleged domestic abuse
Giants kicker Josh Brown released a statement Tuesday apologizing and saying he has "taken measures to get help" for his alleged domestic abuse.

Zero Tolerance For Domestic Violence Will Only Make It Worse
Over and over in her interviews with law enforcement, Molly Brown said that money was one of the topics that made her husband, New York Giants kicker Josh Brown, angry. A fight over financial mail preceded him pushing her into a door while she was pregnant; years later, when she called King County sheriff’s deputies for help, fearing another physical confrontation, the fight was about their finances; and in between those, Josh Brown admitted to manipulating her with money. Molly Brown told a sheriff’s deputy, prosecutor, and advocate that the subject of money "escalates him."

Kicker Josh Brown released by New York Giants - NFL.com
The New York Giants have released kicker Josh Brown, the team announced Tuesday. Brown was placed on the Reserve/Commissioner Exempt List on Friday while the NFL looks into new information regarding Brown's 2015 arrest.

Rehashing Old Stuff

You were all tired of the articles we posted on Corn Nation about Michael Rose-Ivey and other players protesting during the national anthem by kneeling and praying. You wanted our coverage to stop. We did. But the mothership did not get the memo.

The story below is (IMO - don't blame Jon or anyone else) a rather narrow-minded view of Nebraska fan reactions to the situation. Nebraska is a red state, but Nebraskans are also caring people who want to help others. Those things are often painted as mutually exclusive. They are not. The article below tries to paint Nebraska and its football fans with one broad paintbrush.

Fine art is not painted in broad brushstrokes. Fine art is painted in fractions of inches.

Emails show a Nebraska regent was ‘embarrassed’ by Cornhusker football players’ protest - SBNation.com
Correspondence obtained by SB Nation shows Hal Daub’s private messages prior to publicly criticizing a September protest

I know it is easy to call journalists lazy, but it took a fair bit of effort to get the information that SB Nation acquired.It is not lazy journalism. Unfortunately, they ignored so much of the excellent response from the coaching staff, University of Nebraska administration, teammates who chose a different way to express their views, and the civil manner in which many, many Husker fans reacted. Even Rose-Ivey's parents noticed the support.

There was a much better story here than the one written above. That story would have gotten past broad brush strokes and instead of trying to vilify, it would have tried to build on the incredibly moving plea from Rose-Ivey and the eloquent words of Hank Bounds. It would have remembered that emails to public officials are also a first amendment right and a peaceful way to express dissenting opinions.

Because of the leadership shown by so many here in Nebraska, we had already moved on and were moving forward. Maybe we had only moved inches, but it feels like miles.

audioBoom / Game Night with Matt Perrault joined by Tyler Tynes of SB Nation
After a Nebraska Regent came out against the National Anthem protest recent emails obtained by SB Nation Tyler Tynes he joined Game Night and talked about the reaction of the public to his story and the situation

Schedule Rundown

I used to include an article about every team on the Husker schedule, but that got too depressing (hullo Fresno State and Oregon). Instead, you will see articles about our next three opponents.

Wisconsin football: Paul Chryst discusses the loss of Jack Cichy, preparing for Nebraska - Bucky's 5th Quarter
Updates from Paul Chryst’s Monday press conference.

Urban Meyer knows the power of a loss - Land-Grant Holy Land
Can this year’s Ohio State team follow previous Meyer post-loss blueprints?

Minnesota Football: Brandon Lingen out for the season - The Daily Gopher
Lingen is done, Steven Richardson is out with a concussion, and restraining orders continue to plague the Gophers

I normally finish this post with a "have a happy Wednesday everyone!" but that seems inappropriate given my opining on this fine hump day. Hopefully, you find ways to make it a great day whether I tell you or not.

Find a way to listen and care about someone, especially if you disagree with them.