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Friday, September 14, 2007

Game time

All right boys, this is the big one: mighty USC comes to town. There are several keys here, but in order to fully prepare yourself, go to www.Huskerpedia.com and read TJ Simers columns about Nebraska.

Angry? Now listen to this Lou Holtz Pep Talk for Nebraska. While not as good as his excellent Michigan pep talk from last week (you tube it. It didn't work worth a damn, but is funny as hell), I was fired up, speech impediment and all.

Are we ready for some football? Good. Now, here are the keys to Nebraska staying in it:

1. The Blue-Hair factor: As most know the crowd at Nebraska would rather chug metamucil than booze. This is not good. This crowd needs to be insane. If people allow the blue hairs to make people sit down, shut up, and watch like it's a Lawrence Welk performance, big advantage USC. Nebraska fan needs to be like an SEC fan: drunk, loud, screaming, obnoxious, whatever. This is not for every game. In truth I love how focused on the football Nebraska fans are for most games, but IT DOESN'T CUT IT for the number one team in the country. Let's fire it up.

2. Pass rush: We have to keep Keller upright against USC's blitzing linebackers, which are almost superhuman. If he has time, our receivers will be open and he has the arm to get it to 'em, but if he's under pressure the interceptions will come, which will lead to Callahan calling running plays for the entire second half. Stop me if you've seen that happen before, which leads me to:

3. Play calling: I don't give a damn what anybody says, we played like absolute pussies last year. I don't care if that was "the game plan" or whatever Callahan insists, it was a pussy game plan. Simple as that. I was ashamed of that game on so many levels. It was vomit-inducing. I can accept being outclassed, but not even showing up is WTF-worthy. Rightfully so it was called out by most.

Enough about last year. This year, we need to open things up, and to do that, I propose we come out with some Guns of Navarone shit. Throw to set up the run. Loosen them up, then pound the ball. They can be beat in the secondary and we have a quarterback who can get the ball downfield. Trick plays. Whatever. Kitchen sink. Go down swinging. If we do the same thing as last year, we will lose, like last year.

USC is like the bully from the Christmas Story, Scut Farkus. Yes, he's big and has yellow eyes and an evil toadie friend (TJ Simers), but if you just simply decide to punch him, you may just prevail. Here's to hoping Nebraska's performance is so cold, calculated, violent, and incendiary that we get the bar of soap in our mouths on Monday.

4. Defense: Just follow the crowd's lead and play hard. The plays will be made. I think Cosgrove can keep us from getting routed with a scheme, make something big happen.

Bottom line: Yes, they are more talented. Yes, they are better coached. Yes, they have an unbeatable stigma during this era (much like the 90s Huskers). We do not lose badly at home, really ever, and I really think that the blue hairs will not keep Memorial Stadium from being intense as all hell. I think we cover the 9.5, but probably lose, but part of me legitimately thinks we have a chance. I honestly don't know.

Half-assed, two-pronged, cover-the-bases prediction time:
Heart: Nebraska 24, USC 21
Head: USC 31, Nebraska 24

Top 5 places to watch the game in Omaha/Lincoln other than being at the game:
1. Barry's-a great time with a fired up crowd and cheap booze, now that I am officially old I look forward to pulling this off more in the future.
2. The Underwood-As discussed with GA Hill, this place has a mythical, magical touch to Husker games that cannot be denied. Just go there, you'll see. Watch out for seizures and going into the wrong bathroom. (Oh, and lung cancer. Definitely there.)
3. Watering Hole-Best place to watch on O St, IMO. Great charred wings and now right next to the new Cliff's for getting blacked out during a blowout.
4. Tanner's-The best of the West O sports bars.
5. The Blue Jay--It's just funny. Suck it Creighton.

Leave a comment/prediction. Go Big Red!

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Pete, phenomenal post. One of the most well-written I've seen. Beyond the brown-nosing, I agree with your heart. But not your brain.

Crowd goes crazy, blackshirts go crazy...Octavian goes crazy. Defense scores at least once. Our offense will be good enough to get by, but this one is won by special teams and our defense. Both which will be insanely crowd-inspired.

Great post.

Read this via deadspin. Great post but what do you mean "New Cliff's?"

First ballot hall of fame post Pete.

I think this game is going to come down to our Offensive and defensive line. If either of them falter, we are in trouble. As long as the lines have decent games we are going to be right in this.
You were right, the key was the offensive and defensive line play. And we got owned.

It was men against boys out there last night.
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