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Think Negative Thoughts: A Nebraska Football Round Table

We’ve had some positive news lately so time to make a course correction

NCAA Football - Pittsburgh vs Nebraska - September 17, 2005 Photo by Peter Aiken/WireImage

Don’t worry, we aren’t trying to bum you out. We will be publishing a “Think Positive Thoughts” round table as well. I generally like to get the bad news before the good news.

No this isn’t a round table about thoughts of the upcoming season. These are just general negative thoughts.

Join us!

What do you hate about Nebraska football?

Mike: That we haven’t competed for a conference championship since 2012.

Brianna C.: That my hopes are high and my heart is in it every year and for far too long I am crushed.

Nate M: That I care so much. It is just a stupid game. I am also getting tired of watching highlights from the 90’s and McNeese State.

Jon: I hate how cranky everyone gets after a loss. I hate the negativity. Husker football is something I love, but the doom and gloom garbage wears on you after a while. I hate it when some fan says shit like, “I’ve been a fan since 1965, blah blah” as if longevity counts for anything but you being a bigger cranky ass than anyone else. And I really hate Mike Riley. Not in a human hate kind of way like I want his dick to fall off, but in a sports hate kind of way in that I hope his dick falls off.

Patrick: Nebraska needs better surround sound speakers.

Jill: I think what I hate most is that they haven’t been fun to watch for several years. They’ve been getting pushed around in the trenches on both sides of the ball, too inconsistent on offense and often appear to be confused or reading from different pages on defense. I can handle losses as long as a team is fun to watch and right now, Nebraska is not.

Andy: The Riley lovers who were butt hurt at his firing and take every little pot shot at Frost refusing to accept the dumpster fire that was left to him. They can all suck it.

What is your least favorite win in Nebraska football history?

Mike: Wow, this one is a tough one. I can think of two games, depending on whether it’s just the game or what the game meant. As far as a just plain bad win, it would have to be the 2014 Ameer-acle against McNeese State. No excuse for needing a play like THAT to avoid the upset to a 1-AA squad. But as far as giving us a misread on the program, it has to be the 2005 “Restore the Order” curb-stomping of the Colorado urine bombers. It looked like Bill Callahan had turned the program around. Then 2007 happened.

Kevin: Tie for 2015 and 2018 MSU, but if I had to pick just one then . . . BOTH!

Nate M: Almost every win during the Mike Riley era.

Patrick: A win’s a win.

Jill: The McNeese one is definitely up there for me. But, I’ll go with the 2013 Iowa game. Bo Pelini’s demeanor during and after the game made it clear that there was a great deal of toxicity building around the program. The fact that he wasn’t fired and coached the Huskers in 2014, despite that toxic atmosphere only allowed things to get worse and likely contributed to the over-reaction in hiring nice guy Mike Riley. I think Husker fans are still coming to grips with how badly the foundations of the program were eroded toward the end of Pelini’s time here and during Mike Riley’s tenure.

Andy: The Sam Keller 438 yard 3 TD rescue job in a 41-40 escape vs. Ball St. That whole thing was just painful.

What is your favorite loss in Nebraska football history?

Kevin: 2013 MSU, but 2014 was fun as well

Brianna C: Favorite loss? That’s a thing?

Nate M: It might be Texas in 2009. It showed how close we actually were if we just had a decent offense.

Jon: What is this bullshit? “Favorite loss?” Is that like being infected with your favorite sexually transmitted disease?

Patrick: October 23rd, 1999. Texas 24 Nebraska 20. A harbinger of things to come....

Jill: I’m not sure there is such a thing, but I’ll stick with my “fun to watch” mantra. The 2009 Texas loss where Suh was a one-man wrecking crew still sticks in my mind. The offense wasn’t much fun to watch, so maybe it is only my half-favorite loss.

Mike: Any loss bugs the heck out of me, so it’s hard to call any of them a “favorite”. But as far eliminating ANY doubt that Mike Riley had no business being employed by the University of Nebraska, that Minnesota curb-stomping in 2017 has to be up there.

Andy: Absolutely none of them. There were so many near misses leading up to 1994-1997 and each one was another kick in the seeds. I hate this question.

What game was the largest missed opportunity in Nebraska history?

Kevin: Any of the losses to Michigan

Brianna C: Last year’s loss to Ohio State. Maybe it would’ve ended up as a fluke, but I think it could’ve changed the momentum and the attitude of the team. Or the loss to Texas in the Big 12 Championship in 2009. It wasn’t really a missed opportunity though, it was a stolen opportunity.

Jon: That damned “roll left” game against Texas in the Big 12 championship in 1996 that cost us a shot at another national title. The 2010 Big 12 Championship against Oklahoma where we lead 17-0 at half and choked that away. Dammit. Now I have an ulcer just thinking about this question.

Patrick: October 23rd, 1999. Texas 24 Nebraska 20. If won then Nebraska very well could have played for another National Championship and change the course of history as we know it.

Jill: I don’t know about the entirety of Nebraska football history, so I’ll go with some recent memories. I still feel like that Akron game that got rained out - Scott Frost’s coaching debut in Lincoln - set a tone that that contributed to a lackluster season. I don’t think the Huskers would have won the division or anything that season, but it was a drag on the program. The 2010 conference championship loss to Oklahoma is also one that sticks in my craw.

Mike: I like your answer, Jill. It forced Scott Frost to use the Colorado game as a first game - with all of the mistakes that follow. Then Martinez got injured late in the Colorado game, that directly put Nebraska behind the eight-ball against Troy.

Andy: The loss to Texas in the Big 12 title game - who knows what that does for our confidence if we finally get that win against a top 5 team on the big stage. F**k Mack Brown and that finger in the air till his dying day.

What is the worst football game you have watched Nebraska play in? This is more in regards to the actual quality of football from both Nebraska and its opponent.

Kevin: *Shrug... I guess 2017 road game at Penn State because they let a bad Mike Riley offense score so much on them?

Brianna C.: Iowa State 2009

Nate M: Agree with Bri, Iowa State 2009. Woof.

Jon: That Purdue game where Ryker Fyfe through four interceptions and we kept passing with a strong wind going on... it was in 2015. I don’t even remember most of that fall, but I remember that bucket of shit game.

Patrick: File has been deleted.

Jill: I know not what Bri, Nate and Jon speak of. /covers ears. Lalalalalala. I can’t hear them.

Mike: I agree with Iowa State 2009. But Pitt in 2005 is a close second.

Andy: Oklahoma St 2007. The Cosgrovian brilliant “backpedal & read” strategy which led to a thoroughly embarrassing 38-0 halftime deficit. Spent that entire half just stunned and ashamed.

What game in the past makes you stare off into the distance and contemplate the meaning of your existence?

Mike: Two bowl games did that to me: the 1991 Citrus Bowl massacre by Georgia Tech and the 1993 Orange Bowl against Florida State. That Orange Bowl particularly clobbered me for a few days... but for some reason, I was feeling much better a year later.

Brianna C.: Most of the games versus Wisconsin.

Nate M: Texas Tech 70-10. That was a weird night.

Jon: Nate has it correct on this. I was incapable of contemplating the meaning of my existence, but my wife sure as hell contemplated the meaning of our marriage.

Patrick: Colorado 62 Nebraska 36 in 2001.

Jill: The 2012 Big Twelve championship.

Andy: What Patrick said. Getting it stuck to us by the team I most truly despise still stings.

Should Tom Osborne have taken the job at Colorado? Wouldn’t Nebraska be better off now?

Mike: Bwahahahaha! No and no. I don’t know if Bob Devaney would have tried coming out of retirement to coach, but if Osborne would have tried to bring his whole staff to Boulder, it likely would have meant a complete rebuild in Lincoln. Turner Gill might have become a Buffalo, and I think the program very possibly could have cratered.

Brianna C.: No.

Nate M: Yes. I mean aren’t you at least a little bit curious?

Jon: Who wrote this and why do they hate everything? Nobody would have been happy with that decision. Osborne wouldn’t have ended up one of the best coaches in college football history and Nebraska wouldn’t have found a coach as great as that guy.

Patrick: No one likes these questions.

Jill: No and hell no.

Andy: Am I on Candid Camera? WTSF?

What is the most overrated moment or game in the history of Nebraska football?

Kevin: Anything positive to do with Bo Pelini (regarding football wins that is, not the cat or Team Jack stuff)

Nate M: The Eric Crouch catch against Oklahoma.

Patrick: 1974 Sugar Bowl win over Florida.

Jill: Maybe the “Nebraska’s back and we’re here to stay” comment. Again, not sure this is the most overrated moment in the history of Nebraska football, but possibly one of the more recent ones.

Mike: That 2006 game against Texas A&M, where people were told that Bill Callahan clearly had the program pointed in the right direction.

Andy: Everybody acting like the Riley-led win over Oregon was the get over the hump game. That Oregon team looked exactly like the 4-8 team they would end up becoming.

With all of that said, why don’t you give up and simply root for a different team?

Jon: Well, maybe I will!

Kevin: The health of my marriage :D (minus anytime they face MSU being I don’t root for them then)

Brianna C.: No.

Nate M: Because it will be worth it when Nebraska turns it around (whenever that will be). In my opinion, if you jump off the wagon when times are hard then you shouldn’t be allowed to get back on when times are good.

Jon: I am old enough I can live off the past. Besides, what team would I root for? Minnesota? Screw that! Creighton? OMG MAN!

Patrick: Love

Jill: I guess I do work for the University of Illinois now...

Andy: Because I’m an eternal optimist and I get to spend this fall watching the Huskers go undefeated on a pile of Saturdays watching the Huskers’ greatest victories on YouTube.

Mike: You’re right... Go Iowa.