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Nebraska Football’s Virtual Spring Game Offers Perspective and The Morning After

2020 Spring Game served as a reminder of what is and what was.

NCAA Football: Wisconsin at Nebraska Bruce Thorson-USA TODAY Sports

Admit it. You got goosebumps from the tunnel walk of Nebraska’s 2020 virtual spring game.

At least I did.

Yesterday was probably the best any athletic program could possibly hope to do to fill the current void in our sports-crazed lives. The Nebraska Athletic Department put together a virtual game of former Nebraska greats like Tommie Frazier, Trev Alberts, Ahman Green and Mike Rozier.

And Johnny Rodgers.

And Irving Fryar.

And Bobby Newcombe.

I could keep going. In fact, I will.

And Grant Winstrom.

And Jason Peter.

And Will Shields.

And Dean Steinkuhler.

And Ndamukong Suh.

You get the point.

Having Greg Sharpe and Matt Davison actually call the game was the best part. It almost felt real for a moment. I believe it is called suspending disbelief.

There is real life going on all around us and throughout the world. Those things are real and for many they are devastating.

The 2020 Nebraska Spring Game served as a respite from everything real if even for an hour. While it cannot be compared to what is actually going on throughout the world it also served as a reminder that maybe some things so little as a “practice” may not be so little at all.

Five Thoughts on a Dramatic, Entertaining (Virtual) Husker Spring Game | Hail Varsity
It was better than anything we could have collectively imagined.

Nebraska’s virtual 2020 spring game, which we now know pitted current Huskers Cam Taylor-Britt and Wan’Dale Robinson against each other in a game of EA’s NCAA Football 14, has to be labeled a success, right?

Potential Spring Game Stars Had the Scrimmage Been Played | Hail Varsity
Nebraska should have played a (practice) football game in front 70,000-plus fans at Memorial Stadium on Saturday. Instead, the Huskers had to broadcast a virtual game thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The simulated game ended up being pretty cool, but it’s still a poor substitute for the real thing. Saturday’s simulation celebrated stars of the past while the real Spring Game creates new ones — at least for a day.

What's it like to call a virtual spring game? Davison, Sharpe give insight into unique setup | Football |
Eric Crouch caught fire in the second half and threw a last-minute touchdown to Johnny Rodgers to lead a comeback win.

Ahman Green looked like his usual self, while Barrett Ruud racked up 19 tackles.

Steven M. Sipple: Be it backpedaling freaks or smiling freaks, Huskers just need more of them | Column |
Scott Frost fully understands what I'm about to write, and most of you probably fully understand what I'm about to write.

But with the three-day NFL Draft set to begin Thursday night, it bears reiterating. It bears emphasizing.

Shatel: Even when it’s virtual, the Huskers' spring game still brings fans together | Football |
I don’t know who invented the spring game, but I’m pretty sure they had Nebraska ties.

Who else would come up with a way to turn a basic scrimmage into a game day?

Who would win in real game of these Husker legends?
You have to love the gamesmanship by Jason Peter. Even if we are talking about a mythical football game.

As the Huskers unveiled a fun idea on Saturday, holding a virtual Spring Game featuring legends from Nebraska teams of the past, Peter was making sure to get in the other team's head.

Virtual spring game success
LINCOLN, Neb. In an afternoon outside of Memorial Stadium, thousands of Big Red fans watched Nebraska's virtual red-white game. With the actual spring game being canceled, fans rooted for their favorite Huskers who squared off in the EA Sports video game, NCAA Football.