January 20, 2007

What I do Best - Crashing the Party

For those of you who visited my good friend Husker Mike this week, you will have noticed that the “Double Extra Point” blog decided to have a “Husker round-table” among Husker blog personalities. I, like you, was completely and totally outraged at my lack of an invitation. I mean seriously…how on earth can you have a blog conference on Husker football without me? That’s like being in the fudge brownie making business, and only asking Rosie O’Donnell for input on how they taste. Even with Mike…who is about as realistic as you’re going to get, I find the lack of imagination within the control group to be completely deficient.

So with that…I’m going to do what I always do…and that’s crash the party. At Mike’s invitation, I now give you MY take on the Husker “blogger” round table, and will forgive them THIS ONE TIME for not inviting me to the party. Don’t let it happen again.

1. As a Nebraska fan (edit snicker) you no doubt had a well-conceived set of expectations for the year. How did the 2006 Nebraska season jive with your preseason prospects?

Answer – The only reason ANYBODY should have had “well-conceived” expectations for 2006 was because of the complete and total crappiness of the Big 12 North this year and nothing more. Iowa State had no defense. KSU had a new coach with about 3 months of college experience combined on their coaching staff. Colorado had a new coach and lost their last three games the previous season 119-16. Kansas sucks and will always sucks. Which leaves Missouri, who had to come to Lincoln. I don’t think I have to tell you what sort of “road warrior” mentality Gary Pinkel and the Tigers have on the road, despite having as much or more talent than Nebraska on each side of the ball. (yeah, I said it.)

With that, anything LESS than winning the north..with that competition and that North schedule would be seen as a complete failure even by Pop-Warner standards. I mean, Bill Callahan could have allowed a 17 year old male hooker from Thailand call plays during some of those games, and the Huskers still probably would have won, simply for the fact that they were the smartest kid in shop class…so to say. The pre-season expectations beyond that were out of control, including an acid-laced, pot-induced prediction by some that NU would beat USC in Los Angeles. That to me was Husker fan’s pre-season expectations in a nut shell.

2. Given the long-standing success of Husker football (edit – gag) how does losing five games influence your overall evaluation of the 2006 season? In other words, do the losses keep you up at night? Are you comfortable rationalizing them in some way? Or do you take the optimistic perspective of focusing on the left hand of the W/L column rather than the right hand?

Answer – To me, you hicks can look at this two ways. On one hand, the losses were to some pretty good teams in Oklahoma, Texas, Okie State (not really), Auburn and USC. So in that regard…yeah, the five losses are kind of deceiving. But look at it the other way. Who the hell did they beat worth a damn? Texas A&M stands out to me as the lone semi-impressive win, and that was on a last second play to a team that nearly lost to Army and lost to Cal by 35. So a “good win”, yes. “Impressive win?” No. Other than that, Nebraska did absolutely NOTHING to impress me. They beat the horrible teams they should have, including a talented-yet-not-quite-there Missouri team, who decided that even though NU’s secondary sucks…they’d throw 5 yard out patterns anyway.

Although the losses were to good teams, NU didn’t beat a one of them…so to me, the wins are meaningless. (In the fact that you should have won those.) I thought the goal was not to be mediocre anymore? I thought the order was already restored? And don’t give me this crap about losing to Texas….lest you not forget the HORRIBLE egg NU laid at HOME against a beyond-pathetic Kansas team. A game that came within an inch (Peterson fumble through the end zone in OT) of being a loss. (I find that way more relevant than the Texas game, where an All-American DB made a great hit on a below-average wide-receiver to jar the ball loose at the end of the game.

3. Now that the season has come to a close we know that Coach Callahan will go over all areas of the team with an IRS auditor's attention to detail. Help him out by offering a brief assessment of the 2006 offense, defense and special teams.

Brandon Jackson and Zac Taylor are the only two players on offense that even remotely impress me. Taylor has mediocre skills, but is tough as nails…which is important since your offensive line sucks. Brandon Jackson is a monster back there, and will only get better. Too bad he’ll get better on the Houston Texan practice squad instead of on your team. Other than that, I see absolutely nothing to salivate over in 06. Everybody points to Purify at WR, but I dare you to find another player with that much talent, who played as inconsistent and made as many stupid mistakes as he did…and yes, fumbling on the first damn play of the Big 12 title game is a stupid mistake. That guy has all the talent in the world, but you can tell by looking at him that he only tries to break the first tackle..and then quits if he doesn’t. He may have some talent..but he tends to disappear in big games, which tells me he’s lazy on his routes.

On defense, I’m going to put it blunt. Your DB’s are crappy beyond words. I could find four dwarfs from an orphanage in Prague, and they would be able to cover Dwayne Jarrett better than you did in 06. The great thing was…all pre-season we heard about how great they were. Then when they played some decent passing teams…they were torched. (Except Missouri, where Pinkel torched his own QB, but that’s another story). Carriker and the front four was a nice little outfit…but it’s amazing how your sacks go down when Maine isn’t on the schedule to pad them. Linebackers were OK, but I think it’s safe to say that Ruud and McKeon wouldn’t make the practice squad in most big-time programs.

Kicker and punter? Zzzzzzzzzzzzz. Who cares. Callahan was too chicken to kick a field goal outside of 40 yards, so it’s a moot point.

4. No post-season assessment would be complete without handing out some hardware. Who are your 2006 Nebraska offensive and defensive MVPs and why?

Answer – My offensive MVP would be Bill Callahan himself. Nobody made more stupid mistakes, called more bone-headed plays than the wonderboy genius himself. Look no further than the idiotic gameplan against USC, where he was too chicken to do anything other than turtle on the ice like an underweight wing in a hockey fight. To me, he was the one person who contributed more to the mediocreness of the NU offense. If I had to give it to a player, I’d give it to Terrence Nunn, who was unlucky enough to get hit perfectly in the Texas game, and piss away a giant ego boost for the Husker nation.

On defense, I would say Andre Jones would be my favorite. For two reasons: First, his workload during games dropped about 3000% whenever opposing coaches found out just how awful Grixby and Shanle were on the other side. Not that he really did anything, but he was torched less than his counterparts, so I’d have to say he was pretty valuable in that regards. He also cements the award for making the dumbest comments in the history of sports by predicting a win over USC.

On special teams, I’d have to give the award for the NASA scientist who had to get a degree in astrophysics to operate that giant video board during kickoffs. It takes a true genius to get 80,000 overall wearing combine owners psyched up for a kickoff. From what I hear, he did a great job.

5. For something completely different. If you had to name a coach of the year from the Nebraska staff whom would you select? This can be based on any number of things, including performance of a particular unit or the improvement of a particular aspect/unit over previous seasons.

Answer – John Blake, for figuring out that lying to recruits to get them in Lincoln was a tad bit unethical. Runner up for me would be Kevin Cosgrove, who continues to live up to the high standards he set in 2005 when he decided that you could blitz Brad Smith. If ISU, Colorado, Kansas, KSU and Missouri needed reason for hope in the future…look no further than your boy “Coz”.

6. And finally, bust out your mental scrapbook. What is your favorite/most impressionable or defining memory of the 2006 Husker season? This can be a play, a game, a thought/image, or in CBS March Madness terms "One shining moment".

For me, there were so many highlights. Obviously the hit on Nunn to fumble against Texas was a good one. The complete and total lack of any sort of composure on defense against Oklahoma State was pretty good. Dwayne Jarrett going up to grab yet another pass was a highlight. Hell, even watching OU sit at their own 1 yard line on third down was pretty thrilling. (When they went 99 yards.)

But I’d have to say..the one mental picture to me that sums up everything Nebraska football happened just after the Colorado game. If you recall in this photo, the ever-so-humble huskers presented themselves with a fictional “trophy” that recognized their victorious climb in the Big 12 North. ONLY a team like Nebraska, would be THAT desperate for self-satisfaction that they would need to actually MAKE a fictitious trophy, and present it to THEMSELVES. Correct me if I’m wrong, but didn’t you people used to be REAL good? Didn’t you used to go to Orange Bowls? Didn’t you win a (1/2) title or two back in the day? And yet, you took time out to recognized not how great you were..but how awful the rest of the Big 12 north was….capped the previous weeks by beating Missouri team that hasn’t won a big road game in conference since 1969?
To me…that says it all.




(Photo credit and thanks - Lincoln Journal Star and Huskers.com)

13 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Maybe they didn't invite you because your a hyppocrite. You bitch about Husker fan making excuses on losses and the like when you do it yourself.

"Which leaves Missouri, who had to come to Lincoln. I don’t think I have to tell you what sort of “road warrior” mentality
Gary Pinkel and the Tigers have on the road, despite having as much
or more talent than Nebraska on each side of the ball. (yeah, I said it.)"

If Husker fan said this about coming to Columbia you most certainly would have reemed him/her about mediocre expectations and how we suck at life. This statement also reminds me of the 2004 season when a Tiger
team, that had "as much or more talent than Nebraska on each side of the ball" and Brad Smith, was straight up smoked by a team that ended up 5-6.

"They beat the horrible teams they should have, including a
talented-yet-not-quite-there Missouri team, who decided that even though NU’s secondary sucks…they’d throw 5 yard out patterns anyway."

Again with the excuses. What, did Missouri forget we had a game? What qualifys as them being not-quite-there? If (and its a big IF) we lose in Columbia next year can we use that excuse as well?

Don't act like Husker fan is the only one in college football that does this excuse making crap after a loss and we are far not the worst. Everyone does it including some in the Mizzou fanbase.

P.S. I will give you the Big 12 North Title trophy presentation as being lame. I was at the game and like many others was leaving before I could witness us embarassing ourselves.

12:28 PM  
Blogger AJ said...

Here's the difference Gomer (and thanks for reading by the way.

The difference is...I RECOGNIZE reality. It's not that difficult of a concept really. I understand Mizzou has serious issues. I root for them. THey win, I'm happy. They lose, I'm bummed.

As for "mediocre" expectations of Husker fan...you be sure and let me know what day that happens, because I'll be sure to ride in on four horses on a flaming path of fire coming down from teh skies. That day will never ever happen....which is what makes you people the lame, over-hyped, self-indulgent yokels you are.

You have a sign that says how great you are when you walk through the door. What more do you want?

I don't expect Husker fan to grasp the concept of reality. And the day I start bragging on Mizzou fans? Oh yeah....that'll happen to. We have the worst fans on the planet, and I'm damn proud of that.

funny you bring up the 2004 game...because THAT'S EXACTLY WHAT I'M TALKING ABOUT. They can't win on teh road. They can't win a game that gets them over the hump. How is that an excuse? Can somebody explian that please?

Thanks again for chiming in.

3:00 PM  
Anonymous Obsessed Husker Fan said...

In summation to anonymous, I concur. And AJ, you my friend are a true douchebag who has absolutely NO sense of reality. But did I expect anything less? Of course not. GO BIG RED.

4:32 PM  
Blogger AJ said...

Whoa...I throw you a bone and give you some credit and you disrespect me like that?

Wow, that was pretty low. Here I thought you had seen some light. Guess not.

Last time I fall for that.

PS - Go fuck yourself.

6:38 PM  
Anonymous tb said...

obsessed...so aj's the douche bag, what does that make you for continually coming to this site and reading what he writes?

9:45 PM  
Anonymous Obsessed Husker Fan said...

Come on now AJ. You know I stick up for the Red at all costs. I did appreciate the Creighton article and the shoutout though, as evidenced by the thank you in that blog. But to blindly rant on my Huskers is uncalled for. And yes, Missouri is HORRIBLE. You just lack the sense of reality to see this. GO BIG RED.

PS- Jesus loves you.

10:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"You bitch about Husker fan making excuses on losses and the like when you do it yourself."

To be fair though EVERYONE tends to make excuses on losses. Ever heard of "Self serving bias"? It's a psychological theory (backed up by a lot of research evidence) about the entire attribution process.

5:34 AM  
Blogger AJ said...

Wait a second..I want to go back to this psycological shit.

Let me get this straight....I bash on Missouri and bash on Nebraska..but what I'm really trying to do is justify an out if they lose, and yet talk shit if they win? Is that what you'regetting at?

Let's put it another way. Their issues are not always physical. Everybody on EARTH knows that Missouri always starts off well..and pisses it away. We're dealing with 18-22 year old kids here..you don't think they hear that stuff?

So you're saying that if I was a 'real' fan, I couldn't recognize that? So to be a "real" fan, I have to be a myopic dipshit, and predict a national title every year? Just because they have issues and always choke things away, doesn't make me any less of a fan. In fact, we (as MIzzou fans) are the exact opposite of NU fans. NU fans expect 13-0 every single game. Mizzou fans want to win..but are trying to figure out how they'll blow it so they can prepare for the inevitable heartbreak to follow.

Don't go to some psychological bullshit website and throw theories at me. I know what the fuck I'm talking about. I've dealt with you people for 21 years now, and I know what makes you tick. The fact taht you're trying to 'set me straight' is amusing to me if anything.

PS - Creighton sucks and OBF is a dickhead.

1:10 PM  
Blogger JP Anderson said...

Yawn!

4:52 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Husker fan predicts a national title every year? I'm not sure what Husker "fans" you know from work or the outside world, but not all Husker fans were expecting a title in the past five years. I'm sure some did but I'm also sure we aren't the only ones who have people like that (these are the people that also think they can take the house in Vegas and that no credit or bad credit can still get you good deals).

However, at a different time than the current state of Husker football Husker fan had some legitamacy in thinking they could play for the title every year. Think about this, from the early 70's to the early 2000's the Husker football program won 9 or more games every year (that record being broken in 2002). That means they had the opportunities to be playing at center stage for all those years. In fact for some of those years if they would have won one more game they would be in the National Championship game. I don't doubt that your hatred for us is authentic, but don't think for a second that you know everything about Husker fan.

6:03 PM  
Blogger AJ said...

1) I love it when JP has one word replies.

2) Ohhh but I do. And thans for taking it to the literal extreme. What I mean is...you people always expect WAY more than your talent or...ahem...coaching levels prohibit you to do. Take the "beating USC" shit we heard last off-season.

That's what I'm talking about.

Trust me. I know you.

7:21 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

as a husker fan and alum, i just have to say that i love watching the shitstorm that is your comments page. keep up the good work.

9:57 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Man, this is a hilarious critique. Some of it really hits the mark, and some is pretty obvious hyperbole. There is a great argument to be made that the 2nd team in the Big 12 couldn't get past the horrid, horrid Cyclones, which really lends all one needs to know about the "strength" of this year's North.

Nebraska, to me has been relatively consistent, from its 5-6 season to its 9-5 season. The North, which has been weak for quite a few years now, really reached its nadir. I think that is probably due to turn around here: Colorado can't get worse, KSU looks like they've got a little bit of fire back in the belly, and ISU should be able to get back to six wins or so, I would think, with the pricey new coaching staff. Maybe NU will improve with the improvement of competition, but half a dozen losses and no national ranking really does seem to be Nebraska's pattern. Keep in mind that the only reason NU hit 9 wins is because of the schedule expansion.

Comparing this season to history, and you honestly have to drop one of the wins from the column for most upper tier teams that added the 12th game.

NU is a respectable 7 win school, with a deviation of +/- 2. I don't think that is anything to be ashamed of.

If the North ever returns to its glory years, Nebraska may have a real litmus test. Perhaps Callahan coaches down to his competition, although I doubt it.

12:00 PM  

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