It's Spring Game week in Hickland
I seriously hate them. Actually, I pretty much hate all Easter candy. Who the hell decided that food-colored sugar sprinkled on a matted-down piece of white goo would be considered a sugary treat? Who decided that jelly beans were worth a shit? God I hate jellybeans as well. It’s almost as if all of the candy and greeting card people got together and picked on Easter. OK, it’s 6 months away from Halloween and long after Christmas. Why not just dump all of our shitty candy into one holiday, throw on Charlton Heston every year on TV and call it good? Don’t get me wrong, I understand the reason for the holiday and all of that. But if companies are going to exploit a holiday, then go balls out. Don’t color M&M’s baby blue and call it good.
I hope your holiday was good. Easter marks the start of the longest stretch of sports wasteland known to man. Now that the NCAA tourney is over and the Masters is complete, what is left to look forward to? I’ll tell you what…
Yes, leave it to Nebraska to exploit a perfectly good spring weekend, and make something out of absolutely NOTHING. I’ve ranted on this for so long, I have no idea what angle to hit on it. I mean, where do I start? The 45 year old complete losers who sprint at full speed to get Franz Hardy’s autograph? (Jesus man, you’re 45, a full beard and have a driver’s licence..what the fuck do you need some 20 year old kid’s signature for?) Do I rant on JC? (Too easy). Do I rant on the intense wave of myopic horseshit that seems to permeate out of the keyboard of thousands of Nebraska message board posters across cyberspace? (Oooo, that’s a good one). Nah. Why not just sit back and wait, and crack on the inevitable stories to come out of the Nebraska media next weekend. Without even thinking, I can tell you what they are:
- J.C. Keller looks great
- Nebraska fans are the greatest on earth because they fill a scrimmage.
- Road Construction on I-80. (But don’t worry, it’ll be done by October)
- Some fat lineman lost a bunch of weight
- Some skinny Wide Receiver put on a bunch of weight.
- Steve Pederson pissed somebody off
- The offense looked great
- The defense looked great
- Ticket prices are going up, but people love their Huskers anyway
- A new scoreboard is being built somewhere
Did I miss anything?
Speaking of Husker fans who miss stuff, I would be sorry if I didn’t mention this. As one of my loyal readers likes to point out, there is absolutely no coloration between the behavior of players and coaches and the results on the field. Fans want quality players, quality coaches and a successful program. In other words, “Integrity = happy fans”
Although I point to Tom Osborne and his ability to sell his soul for wins by recruiting thugs and criminals, I give you yet another shining example of this theory in action.
Enter my favorite fan base in the Big 12, the K-State Wildcats. As you probably know by now, the purple nation was completely screwed by a fast-talking con-artist who also served as their basketball coach. Huggins electrified Manhattan by bringing in top recruits, a fourth place finish in the Big 12, and a future as bright as the sun. But just as things were starting to settle down, Huggins did what other selfish coaches do, and that’s follow the money to a place where he would be on Sportscenter more often, and make more money doing it.
On a granular level, I don’t blame KSU fan for being pissed off. The guy completely used them for his own personal gain when nobody else would give him a chance. Although most other fans knew the guy was a complete slimeball, KSU fans decided to welcome him with open arms. I’d be pissed off too if I were them, as nobody really deserves that fate.
But the point I’m trying to make is this…K-State got excited because they were finally winning basketball games again. They were on Sportscenter from time to time (rather than never), and were actually watching other people play on the Thursday of the Big 12 tourney. They got a taste of big-time basketball, and they liked it. But why? Did they like it because a guy like Jim Woolridge was bringing in quality students and tough-nosed defenders? Hell no, they were happy, because their roster was filling with big-time talent, and big-time egos. Guys who could barely qualify, yet jump out of the gym were heading to Manhattan, all to the delight of the folks at the Bram.
So how is this different than Tom Osborne and his merry band of thugs? Because K-State knew they were going out on a limb to hire this guy. They weren’t sitting back, talking about how much morally superior they were, while having guys drag some poor girl down the stairs after he found her banging the backup QB. K-State fan was happy, because their new coach was bringing in questionable characters….thugs.
And yes…thugs = happy fans.
You can spin in. You can claim to be superior in every single way that you can think of. But when it comes down to it, Bob Huggins and Tom Osborne are one in the same. The only difference was, Huggins got fired because of a DUI and kicked out…meanwhile Osborne hid under a veil of boredom seldom seen from anyone other than librarians and insurance salesmen.
Both are slimy. Both sell their soul for wins. And both are what is wrong with college athletics. The only difference is, Huggins doesn’t have a field named after him.