Not because I have some sort of moral complex or (God forbid) ethics…but I really hate going against things I said I wouldn’t do. However, in this particular case, I feel the situation warrants it. So for the purpose of this one post, let’s forget I’m AJ the friendly 3rd party Husker observer and college football fan. Instead, I will slip on my gold Missouri Tiger t-shirt one more time and respond the best I can.
As many of you have heard, a local radio station spent the better part of 10 minutes blasting me and the team I root for on Friday. Apparently I was deemed too out of line by a couple of Omaha DJ’s (“DJ’s…”sports talk show hosts”..whatever) when I said that college football has changed to the point that Nebraska and other “traditional powers” were no longer entitled to their spotlight in the sun because of their name alone.
The entire e-mail debate was spurred by the Will Compton saga and an ignorant comment that followed a few days prior on air that was, “You’re still Missouri”.
Now don’t get me wrong…I’m not stupid enough to blindly forget 30+ years of bad football by the Tigers. I’m also not stupid enough to blindly ignore the fact that from the early 70’s through the first few minutes of the 2001 Colorado game in Boulder…Nebraska carried an arrogance and invincibility that reverberated throughout the game. I’m also not about to get personal against the two gentlemen who railed against me. They are talented in their field, and I respect the work they do. I even find them a bit entertaining when they aren’t asking listeners who they think would play Bo Pelini in a Husker version of “Mad Bo – Beyond Huskerdome.”
However the pure ridiculousness and overwhelming arrogance that spews out of statements like this is stifling. I mean how blind do you have to be to think that because “You’re Nebraska”, you’re just automatically set aside a plate at the big boy table for every season henceforth into eternity? Who the hell do you people think you are? When was the last time "tradtion" could cover a spread offense run by vastly superior athletes?
The on-air rant on Friday was aimed at several main points. In light of the idiotic nature of these points, I shall now rebut the main points.
* “Missouri didn’t even make a BCS game, they got jobbed by Kansas.”
Uhh….The BCS is a beauty pageant, and the Orange Bowl director admitted on WHB radio in KC the week of the selection that they didn’t even know Missouri had beaten Kansas…only that the Squaks had one loss. Did KU get a BCS "bid"? Sure. Did they win the North? Uhhhh...no. Good one radio man.
* “Chase Daniel is the only reason Missouri has taken 'the next step'”
Hmmmm…that’s funny. I was thinking the same thing about Tom Osborne. I mean, it’s the same theory right? One person comes in..makes a huge mark and a huge impact? If you can say that Missouri’s renaissance is only due to Daniel, than I can argue that facts prove that once Osborne left, the Huskers moved into Mediocreville. Besides, wasn’t it people working at the exact same radio station who earlier this year marveled this past fall at the man-child that is Blaine Gabbert? How soon they forget. If you can hold one person responsible...then certainly I can too. And no, just because Porn-hatin Tom is still standing on the sidelines with that blank look on his face doesn't mean some 18 year old kid is going to play harder.
* “I believe this Nebraska team will be better”
How so? I’d love to hear proof. Call me crazy, but after all the Sam Keller Heisman talk, I’d like to see a couple of facts that back this up. (I'd also like to see just who the hell NU has that is going to catch passes last year, unless you think Marlon Lucky will end the season with 189 receptions.) Not that I don’t believe an unproven assistant with the temperament and professionalism of a 6 year old can make a big difference. It’s just that after listening to a whole off season of Husker BCS talk this past year…I’d just assume believe the sky is plaid than believe anything any of you say in the future tense.
* “Traditional teams will always have the resources to pull into football.”
In other words, you have absolutely nothing else, and will sell your soul (ie recruit criminals etc) to win? Hmmm..that’s funny, because last time I checked, your last AD was having a bit of trouble raising money for the Husker superfortress. Meanwhile “little programs” like Oklahoma State and Missouri are tapping into personal fortunes and Wal-Mart money while blowing past you. Last time I checked, 40 foot red waterfalls in the football offices never helped Corey McKeon learn how to tackle.
I’m somewhat sad I have to do this…but since I can’t exactly write a 30 page e-mail to rebut them…nor can I pick up the phone and call (seriously..would you let me on your radio show?) …I have to reply in some manner. I apologize to those who have absolutely no idea what I’m talking about. But rest assured you’re not really missing anything. Just another example of denial and delusional thinking taken to it’s highest form.
If this sort of thing surprises you, then you haven’t been reading this column long enough.
You can listen to these asinine comments at the following link. (And no, I don’t mind sending them the traffic. They can pay me later)