Tag Archives: bankshirts

Sunday Afternoon Hot Takes: Wisconsin Edition

Before kickoff yesterday, we shared some new and bizarre ways for Wisconsin to beat the Huskers to add a little spice to the boring predictability of blowout losses. One way we didn’t suggest was a last second Badger field goal because that just seemed to a little too trite.

We all know how that worked out.

Rafael Gaglianone
How it feels when coach says he’s taking you to Olive Garden to celebrate.

How Much Stress Can One Blogger Take: Yesterday was the first Husker game I watched at home in three years. With kickoff at 12:30 and the first pitch of the Dodger game at six, I chose to stay home and increase my odds of getting to see the end of the game and make it to Chavez Ravine in time.

For the record, it is exactly 7.6 miles from our driveway to Dodger Stadium.

Thanks to an Obamajam and USA playing Mexico at the Rose Bowl, LA traffic was promised to be extra crazy so we planned to leave at four.

The clock struck the fateful hour with about five minutes or so left in the game. The only perk of staying home was being able to sync up the Huskers app and watch the game with the ESPN choads on mute. Up until that second, everything worked like a charm until my lovely wife said, “You can listen to it in the car.”

15 minutes later she was dragging me out of the house by my ear without granting even a second to mourn what had happened to the Huskers yet again.

We listened to the post game press conference en route and her thoughts on Mike were that “he sounds like a nice guy and maybe a little sad.

No kidding.

Luckily, the Dodger game made for a nice, relaxing Saturday evening of October baseball. It wasn’t at all the craziest game I’ve ever attended thanks to Chase Utley‘s fateful, game tying double play break up. While social media was imploding with outrage, the feeling in the stands was completely different. The Mets fans surrounding us thought what happened was an acceptable baseball play and were more upset about getting hosed on getting an out at second. Once it was revealed that Tejada suffered a broken leg, the mood for both sides definitely turned somber. Before you rail on Utley, think how you’d feel if it were Alex Gordon breaking up a double play or remember how you felt when Kenny Bell laid down his soul crushing block.

Leave it to a Giant’s blogger to have probably the most rational take on what happened. And for good measure, here are some previous thoughts from Mets manager Terry Collins about the need to be tough when breaking up double plays.

Mike Riley’s Balloon Watch: Last week’s pile of poo is now on fire.

Mike Riley Flaming Pile of Poo

Our Score Prediction:

Pretty far off-base on the score but it’s all there was to work with. The magic score prediction hat is still MIA and may or may not have gone missing after seeing Van Halen at the Hollywood Bowl last Friday night.

Best Shade of the Day:

DPE: Remember when DPE broke his foot but the silver lining was that if everything went OK he’d be back in time to run wild against Wisconsin? DPE had a pair of receptions for 31 yards. Since his return at Illinois, he’s been a complete non-factor.

Running Back by Committee: Can this please stop? Last week it was Imani Cross who was absent from the backfield. He returned this week with Ozigbo taking his place in parts unknown on the Husker sideline. And does Mikale Wilbon need to get his picture put on a milk carton or what?

Jordan Stevenson: His redshirt was burned for 14 kick return yards, a couple touchbacks, and the honor of becoming running back number five.

Andy Janvovich: This is the perfect summation of his 55 yard touchdown run.

That Bankshirt Defense Tho: When Wisconsin got the ball back with 63 seconds to play, you just knew it was going to be curtains for the Huskers. It was inevitable that Joel Stave was going to find a way to shred the Huskers’ secondary like cheddar and he did just that, taking the Badgers from their own 30 to the Huskers’ 28 in only three plays. Not to beat the dead horse of bringing up the old regime but chances are they would have rolled the dice and dialed up a blitz on one of those plays. Getting Stave to the turf just once would have chewed up some major clock for Wisconsin.

Dirk Chatelain and Hip Hop: As someone who professes his love of The Boss in his twitter bio, it shouldn’t be surprising that Dirk may not be the most well versed when it comes to that hippity hop but this passage in his otherwise on-point column is a real head scratcher-

…the speakers blasted “Let Me Clear My Throat,” an old-school hip-hop song that, when it comes on the radio, prompts your father to turn the station.

DJ Kool dropped Let Me Clear My Throat in 1996. While Pearl Jam is starting to show up on classic rock radio from time to time, mid 90s hip hop is a little too new to ever be considered old school. And then, there’s the issue of Let Me Clear My Throat even appearing on radio outside of a specialty station such as 93.5 KDAY. So with that in mind, for “dad” to even have a chance to hear DJ Kool, he would already be listening to a hip hop oriented station and would probably turn up the radio, not change the station.

Or, maybe “dad” is riding shotgun and your car and if that’s the case he should be respectful of the universal “my car, my rules” policy.

NUMBERS TO DEPRESS YOUR FRIENDS WITH

1: The number of times a Husker running back has rushed for over 100 yards in a single game this season. (Newby hit 198 against South Alabama.)

394: Sam THUNDERLEG Foltz‘s yardage on nine punts. The Husker offense racked up 325 total yards.

3: Total carries for last week’s running back of the future Devine Ozigbo.

39.28: Tommy Armstrong‘s completion percentage. He was 11 – 28 on the day. He’s currently at 52.4 percent on the year which is almost a full tick below last year’s 53.3%.

36: The total margin by which the 2 and 4 Huskers have outscored their opponents this year.

17: Jordan Westerkamp‘s total receiving yardage the past two games.

17, 715: The turnout for #7 Youngstown State‘s rumble with #4 Illinois State. The Cardinals flew away with 31 – 29 victory after the Penguins’ 2 point conversion and ensuing onsides kick failed.

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Breaking Down the Bankshirts’ Worst Play

What’s up, reader(s)? Miss us? Don’t worry, this humble little slice of the Husker internet didn’t decide to run for cover now that Big Ten play is here.

This week got kind of turned upside down due to attending an AC/DC concert Monday night at Dodger Stadium. As hard as they tried (thanks for ears that are still ringing and a two day hangover) Angus Young and company could not blast the memory of one particularly horrific play the Bankshirts made against Southern Miss out of my head.

Starting with that darn Hail Mary (or Hail Joseph Smith), the age of the Bankshirts has been maligned to the point that the names Mark Banker and Kevin Cosgrove are starting to appear together in pieces by Brandon Cavanaugh and Steve Sipple which is never a good sign.

So, without further ado, the Bankshirts’ play that sticks in my craw more than any other happened with 9:30 left to play and the Huskers comfortably leading 36 – 21. Southern Miss was starting a drive at their own 25 yard line and quarterback Nick Mullens threw a short pass to running back Ito Smith as he sneaked his way out of the backfield. It was a nice safe choice to start a drive that was sure to gain a nice little chunk of yardage towards another first down.

Except for the fact that it netted 39 yards and more missed tackles than I have the ability to count.

Here’s how it started…

BustedPlay1

Freedom Akinmoladun
and Greg McMullen rush Mullens like they’re trying to scare off a bear. Mullens flings the ball off to Ito who’s all alone.

BustedPlay2

Have no fear, Nate Gerry is there to limit Ito’s catch to a only a five yard gain. Oops.

BustedPlay3

Over on the offensive side of the ball, Keith Williams‘ number one rule for his receivers is to make the first defender miss. Surely that philosophy can’t be a universal phenomenon so we’ll give Gerry a pass because Chris Jones is there to try to back him up.  And because football is a team sport, Mohamed Barry adds a whiff of his own while Dedrick Young gets blocked all the way out to Waverly.

BustedPlay4

From here, the Bankshirts kick in a ferocious level of pursuit not seen since that one time Jack Hoffman scored a touchdown.

BustedPlay5

Luckily, Byerson Cockrell remembers they’re playing a game that counts and swoops in with a potential touchdown saving tackle. Southern Miss would go on to score 8 plays later after Josh Kalu was unjustly charged with a pass interference call the negated his interception at the goal line. On the upside, three and a half minutes were chewed off the clock.

Will things get better for the Bankshirts against Illinois on Saturday?

Hard to say but it will also be hard to do much worse than this complete and total meltdown.

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Sunday Morning Hot Takes: Southern Miss Edition

Pop quiz: What’s the best part of a Sunday?

There’s no chance of a Husker football game to stress you out.

The game should have been a cakewalk but Southern Miss just had to add itself to the ever-growing list of teams that have given Husker Nation heart attacks the season. The Huskers came out strong before devolving back to what was on the field for the first three quarters against Miami last week. Like the Millennium Falcon, the Big Red somehow found a way to hold together and get the win.

On with the hot takes.

Mike Riley’s Balloon Watch: A win is a win but the way Southern Miss kept it interesting until the last damn second means Mike’s balloon holds steady for another week at partially deflated.

MikeRiley Sad Balloon

Offense: It’s getting closer to having an identity even if that identity could best be described as make some spectacular plays to get to the red zone only to kick a field goal after stalling out. One of these days it will click more than it sputters and it will be a lot of fun to watch.

Defense: Hey…  the Bankshirts™ got the sack when it mattered the absolute most and spared us the drama of finding out if the Huskers figured out how to stop the Hail Mary. That secondary tho… lawn chairs randomly placed around the field could do a better job of defending the pass.

Andy JanovichCareer stats entering today’s game: 3 rushes for 6 yards, 3 receptions for 29 yards. Against Southern Miss: 5 rushes for 68 yards, 1 reception for 53. It’s a bummer that he’s already a senior but maybe it’s a good thing that Dirk’s days of being able to make analogies that even we think are bat shit crazy are already numbered.

Alex LewisThe officials called his number only once today. Good job, buddy!

The Big Red Cobcast: The only best part about sparsely attended 9am games is that they give you a chance to easily shoot the breeze with your fellow members of Husker Nation since there isn’t a packed room of fans shouting over each other. The vibe of a morning game is almost like a Husker Study Hall where the cool teacher lets you talk as long as you don’t get too rowdy. For Southern Miss, that meant 3 quarters of cracking jokes with Pat and Ryan from the Big Red Cobcast and 1 quarter yelling at the nearest TV. If you don’t already subscribe, the Cobcast is a must listen for any Husker fan.

NUMBERS TO IMPRESS YOUR FRIENDS WITH

45-7: Our overly bold score prediction. In our defense, we were on pace to be close until Southern Miss realized the Huskers have no pass defense.

65.7: Tommy Armstrong’s completion percentage (23/35). The drops that plagued Husker receivers last week against Miami were mostly gone but Cethan Carter seemed to be running the wrong way every time the ball was thrown to his ZIP code. (Even Brandon Cavanaugh agrees so we must be onto something.)

23: Our good buddy Brent called the over/under on attendees to our watch site at 22.5. At kickoff there were 29 die hard Husker fans who rallied for the 9am start time thanks to a group visiting from Columbus. (Kudos to them for packing Husker gear.) When they bolted at halftime, that left exactly 23 of us to sweat it out to the final second.

12: The Huskers had 12 penalties totaling 98 free yards but none were for having 12 men on the field which is a pleasant surprise. The season total for that bonehead move remains at three.

6: The number of miles Bo Pelini will be from the Nebraska border next Saturday when his Youngstown State Penguins travel to the land of great faces and great places to take on the University of South Dakota Coyotes, a team he faced in Lincoln just two years ago. Maybe you remember it the day Tommy Armstrong made his first career start in place of a hobbled T-Magic?

2-2 Along with the Huskers, these other brand name teams are also sitting at a double deuce: Oregon, Oregon State, Auburn, Georgia Tech, Virginia Tech, BYU, South Carolina, Tennessee, Washington.

1: The number of times this season the Huskers have had a 100 yard rusher. Seriously. We even looked it up.  Terrell Newby’s  198 yard day against South Alabama is the only time this season a Husker has rushed for over 100 yards. That day seven different Huskers toted the rock for 258 yards. Against Southern Miss the Big Red racked up 242 yards split between eight different ball carriers with Newby leading the way with 76. It’s great that Langsdorf is spreading the wealth but one of these days a hoss running back needs to emerge from the pack.

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