Tag Archives: boneyard

View from the Boneyard: South Alabama

Between a 7pm kickoff time, the end of the BYU game, and the fact that we were playing South Alabama, none of us were too concerned about arriving at Memorial Stadium that early to secure our seats.

Lo and behold, there were a whopping 15 people in line at East stadium when our group arrived just a half an hour before doors opened. Even the line to South stadium seemed to be slacking attendance-wise.

Our usual group had grown even larger than before, making it even more crucial for us to save two rows of seats. I met a new Minnesotan friend that had the same phone and phone case as me, though, which was pretty cool but also kind of eerie.

In typical fashion, doors opened for South stadium minutes before East stadium got let in, leaving the older students to sit and watch as the freshmen and sophomores try to blur the line between the definitions of walking and running.

The Boneyard Challenge was brought back during this game, which takes students from both sections and has them compete in a game out on the field. This time, it involved the bubbles.

The first big hits of the day at Memorial Stadium.

There’s something oddly satisfying about watching people in giant bubbles run full speed into each other to try to knock each other down. Right out of the gate, my roommate completely annihilated the other girl. I’ve never been more proud.

One of my favorite additions for this season are other games being played on the HuskerVision screens before the game starts. Watching Notre Dame v. Virginia helped passed the time, especially watching my die-hard Notre Dame fan friend react to the end of the game.

Once our game started, it didn’t take long for the Huskers to show that they meant business. An interception by Nate Gerry on the Jaguars’ first possession sent the student section from nonchalant to exploding, which was exactly the momentum that we needed after a heartbreaking loss the week before.

Terrell Newby gets the Huskers on the board and balloons in the air.

Soon after, I was challenged by some of our newcomers to the group to see if I could get us on the big screen. This is the one challenge that I never take lightly, so I told them to just sit back and watch.

Between being a theatre kid and a broadcasting major, being in front of a camera and an audience is pretty comforting to me, so getting the attention of a camera guy seems almost second nature. Focused in on a camera in West stadium, I had acquired my target.

I spent the entire first quarter directing all of my singing, dancing, and random posing at the one camera in hopes that they would notice me. When I say entire first quarter, I mean it. Soon after, HuskerVision had made it clear that this was war as nothing but my face graced each screen in Memorial Stadium.

Zooming out, the screen was soon filled with embarrassing shots of me and my friends pulling out our stupidest dance moves and cheering. Honestly, if you’re trying to look cool on the big screen at a sporting event, you’re doing it wrong.

Once halftime hit, I immediately look for two of my roommates next to me. Our fourth roommate is on the flag line, and the day before we had made it clear to her that we were going to embarrass her while she performed.

As everyone else sat down watching the show, we were standing up against the gate dancing and cheering for our roommate, Hannah. With the way that I was acting, you would think that I was a mom on Toddlers and Tiaras and Hannah was competing for Ultimate Grand Supreme.

Not long into the 3rd quarter, a touchdown from Imani Cross put the Huskers up 31-0. At this point, I had scream-sang the words to Hail Varsity so many times that I’m still surprised that I haven’t learned the middle part yet. But considering that I hadn’t even known that there were words to Hail Varsity until my junior year, I’d say I’m doing pretty well.

A 36-yard field goal for South Alabama almost seemed like the end of the world after keeping the Jaguars scoreless for nearly three quarters. Had you looked at their fans’ section afterwards, you’d think that they were right back in the game at that point.

It wasn’t long after that when suddenly I found myself completely unable to dance to the music being played. Other than Jump Around (thanks, Wisconsin), there’s only one song that I refuse to celebrate to: Chelsea Dagger. Being Minnesotan and a die-hard hockey fan, I just can’t bring myself to dance and cheer during the Blackhawks’ goal song.

The camera guy that I had been harassing the entire night had taken notice to my sudden lack of dancing, as he put my entire group of dancing friends on the big screen with me just out of the shot. Touché, camera man.

With nearly half of Memorial Stadium cleared out at this point, South Alabama had finally scored their first touchdown of the night with just under five minutes left. A failed 2 point conversion attempt left the Huskers with a 48-9 victory and left us contemplating whether it’s too late to plan a road trip down to Miami for next weekend.

Huskers Get The Win
A welcome site to see after last week’s heartbreaking finish.

Hayley Archer is a senior Broadcasting major at UNL. Follow her on Twitter at @Harchinator.


Meet Student Correspondent Hayley Archer

A new feature for Big Red Fury this season is the addition of Hayley Archer, a senior Broadcasting major, as our first-ever student correspondent.

Last spring I put out a call that this humble site was looking to hire a student contributor to write up game recaps based on what they experienced from their spot in the Boneyard. As a marginally responsible adult, I thought it could be a good way to pay forward some of the opportunities I received while a student at UNL and add a little flair to this joint.

I had a solid idea of who I was looking for and received several great applications from some pretty thoroughbred Husker fans. Then Hayley’s submission swooped down from the sky like a Pegasus.

I was hoping to snag a Jammal Lord-like combo of talent and enthusiasm for the Big Red and ended up with an Eric Crouch.

Seriously, she’s gonna be great. Check out our Q & A to get to know the newest member of the Big Red Fury team —

OK, so tell us a little bit about yourself. Kidding. That’s a horrible question. We’ll cut to the chase. You’re from Minnesota but you’re a die hard Husker fan, how did that happen?

Honestly, I get asked this question and I’m still not sure what the answer is. I had fallen in love with the UNL campus in the few times I had been here, so I ended up coming here for school and becoming a Husker fan all just kind of happened.

What’s been the response by your friends and family after the last couple games against Minnesota?

Well, for the first game that I was here for, we won and I didn’t hear anything from anyone except my dad who naturally just played it off like it was no big deal to him. The next year, my phone (that was about 3 years old at that point) ended up freezing from all of the notifications that I got from everyone — both football fans and non-football fans. This past game I didn’t really get the same response from the Gopher fans, mostly because I think they felt bad about what happened with my phone the year before. Minnesotans are too nice.

Hayley Archer
Student contributor Hayely Archer. Look for her reports from the Boneyard for every home game and maybe even a few away games.

Once you took the plunge into becoming a Husker fan, did you do anything to get up to speed on Husker lore such as binge watching classic highlights on YouTube?

Don’t tell my mom, but I actually accidentally missed one of my classes one day from binge watching things on YouTube. Full games, highlights, interviews, everything. I’ve been (a little) more responsible about it, but I still love learning more about the history of the Huskers.

Your first game, who did the Huskers play and what was the experience like?

My first game was quite the experience. It was the first home game my freshman year — Southern Miss in 2012. This was back when they let students get their tickets checked at both gates, and since both my friend and I had no idea where we were going, we ended up getting lost inside the stadium and sitting in the first 10 rows of East Stadium. The entire experience was chaotic trying to figure out what all was happening with the students, but it was still quite the experience. I actually didn’t find out that I was in the wrong spot until the next game when my friends brought me to South Stadium.

Favorite game day ritual?

I have a pair of game day socks that I wear (almost) every game. They’re not lucky or anything, because we’ve still lost when I wear them, but for some reason I still wear them. Except I forgot them for the B1G Championship game…. So I’ll take the blame for that one. Sorry guys.

All-time favorite game moment?

I’ve had so many but I think I’m going to have to go with the two cliches — the Hail Mary and being able to watch Jack get his touchdown at the spring game. Both still give me goosebumps every time I watch them, and I still haven’t been able to watch Jack without at least tearing up.

With the Hail Mary, were you sitting in your usual spot and what was the reaction like around you? Was that the loudest it’s ever been for you at Memorial Stadium?

For the Hail Mary I was in South Stadium since I was only a sophomore at the time. I was somewhere in the front ten rows, which was pretty typical for us. Within a few seconds after the catch, everyone else was magically in the front ten rows as well, since everyone was jumping up and down and falling and whatnot. It was pure chaos and excitement everywhere. I hugged like eight people that I had never met before. But despite the excitement from everyone, I’d still have to say the loudest that I’ve ever seen Memorial Stadium was at the 2012 game against Wisconsin. That was absolutely insane.

You’ve never missed a home game. Have you ever had to do anything crazy to keep your streak alive?

I haven’t been home for Thanksgiving in two years, now going on three. Since I have my own apartment now, my parents came down here to celebrate last year, and I’m sure they’ll probably come down this year too.

On that rare occasion when the Huskers lose, what’s your mood like following a loss?

I definitely stand out because I definitely still have my Minnesotan optimism. It’s always the “we’ll get them next time!” or “if we just work on this, we’ll be great!” Unless it’s against Wisconsin, because that one’s personal.

As an “outsider,” what’s a favorite quirk that you’ve noticed among Nebraskans both as people and as Husker fans? (My wife is from Louisiana and she laughs whenever she hears the word ‘pop’ and chanting Go Big Red, three times every time, drives her bananas.)

I haven’t really noticed too much that’s different between Nebraskans and Minnesotans, but being from Minneapolis and being around so many small-town people has been pretty interesting. Overall though, I think I stand out more to Nebraskans, because apparently I have an accent and my love for hockey is “weird.”

If you could share a Runza with any current player who would it be? (And if you say anything bad about the hallowed Runza, this conversation is over.)

Well usually my go-to answer would be Kenny Bell, but he doesn’t count anymore. I’m probably going to have to go with Sam Foltz. He seems pretty cool and we’re both Vikings fans so I’m sure we’d get along great.

If you could share a Taco John’s Six Pack and a Pound with any former player who would it be? (And if you say anything bad about John and his delicious tacos and spicy potatoes this conversation is over.)

I feel like after my last answer I have to go with Kenny Bell. He’s been my favorite player since my first game here. But I also think it’d be pretty interesting to be able to sit down and talk with Suh.

If you could travel back in time (is there still a time machine on the roof of Oldfather Hall?) and witness any moment in Husker history what would it be?

I know it’s kinda lame to choose something that I’ve already experienced, but I would give anything to be able to go back in time and relive the Wisconsin game in 2012. The atmosphere of Memorial Stadium was unreal, and there is literally nothing I love more than seeing the Badgers lose.

So… does your dislike of Wisconsin simply stem from years of Vikings/Packers games?

Growing up in Minnesota I feel like you’re taught to hate all Wisconsin teams before you’re taught to cheer for Minnesota teams. I was never a huge Gopher fan for football when I lived there, but I still loathed the Badgers. I’m just glad Nebraska finally feels the same way.

Awesome. People out here in LA don’t understand that states can have serious beefs with each other.

Especially with border battles haha.

What’s your outlook on the season? Are you expecting instant success or are you OK with a bumpy road?

I have high hopes for this season, but I am more than okay with a bumpy road. It may take a year or two for Mike Riley to really get the team that he’s envisioning, and once he gets a couple of his own recruiting classes in here , I think he’s going to do some pretty great things.


Behind The Scenes At The Boneyard Bash

With just two weeks before football season and countless lost freshmen looking for something to do and people to meet, there seemed to be only one solution to everyone’s problems: open practice at Memorial Stadium at the first-ever Boneyard Bash.

Memorial Stadium
It’s good to be back. Soon, this place will be rocking.

Around 1:45  Saturday afternoon, I arrived at Memorial Stadium with a handful of the sport directors for The Iron N. Granted, I have no responsibilities when it comes to my minimal membership in the club, but much like all of the new freshmen on campus, I refuse to go to an event alone.

While we set up the tables of free t-shirts and koozies inside, a line of students quickly formed outside of Gate 24. Thirty minutes later, a flood of over 1,500 students poured in to the stadium. From wide-eyed freshmen wearing their lanyards around their necks to seniors claiming front row seats that were rightfully theirs, there was a good mix of different students in attendance.

Line of Students
Moments after this photo was taken, I was nearly trampled by the rush. Hope you enjoy it.

Suddenly caught in front of a Pamplona bull run of students, all I could imagine was how this was (almost) exactly how Mufasa died in The Lion King. (Editor’s note: Spoiler Alert!) I retreated back to my usual game day seat in the front row of the East Stadium student section and watched the never ending sea of students fill over two entire sections of seats.

The Boneyard Crowd
Obligatory photo of the ‘No Photos’ warning while students piled into the hallowed midfield seats.

Once the crowd had settled in, Mike Riley (looking sharp in a Boneyard t-shirt) spoke with students. I was able to overhear more than a few people mention how “adorable” he was, which is probably the polar opposite of any word students had used to describe Bo in previous seasons.

Mike Riley Addresses The Boneyard
Head Coach Mike Riley addresses the crowd before getting the Boneyard Bash started.

The players were out on the field as De’Mornay Pierson-El whipped some donuts on the sideline in his cart. Needless to say, I think he’s doing pretty well after his surgery.

Throughout the scrimmage, prizes such as gift cards and video game consoles were being given away to numerous students who checked in to the event on The Iron N Rewards app. The new app allows students to check in at various events to earn points to go towards different prizes. Despite currently sharing the first place title (not to brag), I didn’t win any of the giveaways. I’d also just like to take a moment to let the other seven students currently in first place know that they’re going down and I will win the free textbooks. Not that I’m competitive or anything.

Unfortunately since the event was still technically a practice, no photos or videos were allowed. I’m sure in that same nature they wouldn’t be too crazy about going into detail on what I saw on the field, and after seeing Bo’s interactions with the media, I’d rather try to stay on the coaches’ good sides. But I will say that with what I saw, I have high hopes for this season.

Editor’s Note: If the action on the field during the Boneyard Bash was anywhere close to the action in this Boneyard Bash, the Huskers might just be alright. Now the question is, which Blackshirt is going to step up and claim Grave Digger as a nickname?


We’re Hiring a Student Contributor

Do you sit in the Boneyard?

Do you write good?

Are you suddenly confused by that last question?

Good. You just might have what it takes to join the Big Red Fury team. We’re upgrading and hiring a student contributor for the 2015 season.

In addition to a paid position as a writer for a Husker site that’s simultaneously mind boggling and brilliant, you’ll get a solid stack of great writing samples (if being a writer is your thing) and a legit reference from us when it comes time for you to leave the cozy womb of college and enter the real world. (By all means, stay in school as long as you can.)

WHO WE ARE LOOKING FOR: A UNL student who has a passion for writing, the Huskers, sits in the Boneyard (important because your column will be called View from the Boneyard) and never misses a home game.

If you have to miss one because an inconsiderate friend or relative chose to have a wedding on game day, you have our permission to attend. You’ll just have to do a write up on the anguish of missing a game.

This position is open to any grade level and major. If you’re an eager freshman to-be and you think you’ve got the chops, go for it.

The Husker Boneyard
Do one of you want to come work for us?

TO APPLY: Send an introductory email to –


– telling us about yourself (doesn’t have to be a formalized cover letter) and include the following three items:

1) A sample post: A recap of your favorite game last season or go to the Spring Game and do a write up of your experience.

Your recap should put readers in your shoes and give a feel for what it’s like to be in the Boneyard. Shoot for 500 – 800 words (no penalty for going over). Don’t worry about including photos with your submission but feel free to include any if you like. Recaps during the season should include photos and/or video.

You can check out examples our game write ups here and here. As you’ll see, they are a mix of humor and analysis.

Humor: If we had to describe our style, we’d call it semi-sophisticated potty humor. Deadspin, Grantland, and A.V. Club are some of our favorite websites. F-bombs, S-bombs, etc, should be used sparingly for maximum effect. Strive for PG-13, not R. Slang you’d find in the Urban Dictionary, witty pop culture references, and YouTube videos are always welcome.

Analysis: This is not a site readers turn to for a serious X’s and O’s breakdown but right-on if that’s your wheelhouse. Your analysis should be your description of what you saw.  That could mean a breakdown like this or this or this.

2) Links to your public social media profiles: Twitter, Instagram, Vine, Facebook. We’re old so that means we don’t understand that Chatsnap. If your profiles are private, that’s totally cool. We just want to get a feel for who you are and what you’re in to.

We’re looking for writing talent, not an influencer. However, you will be expected to share your work socially and we’ll be promoting you as a featured contributor.

3) Explain the significance of 603 in our email address: Bonus points if you get it right.

STIPEND: $25 per game recap, paid via PayPal upon publication plus an end-of-season bonus based on any potential ad revenue the site generates. (We have absolutely no idea what that could be.) Your deadline will be midnight (Lincoln time) the Sunday following the game so that your piece can run on Monday. For you anal retentive types that means Sunday night, not Saturday-just-turned-to-Sunday at the stroke of midnight.

Please keep in mind that the person who wrote what you just read has been working as a writer in one capacity or another since starting out at the Daily Nebraskan way, way back in 1997 and is a Jedi Master when it comes to laziness and creative excuses and has never missed a deadline. In other words, don’t be a flake.

Deadline to apply is May 1, 2015.


Email us: bigredfury603(at)gmail(dot)com