It seems like the only one who’s confident about the Blackshirts’ chances of stopping the Oregon Ducks is Bob Diaco.
That would be same Bob Diaco whose defense surrendered 497 yards to Arkansas State last week and made no bones about the fact that his bone throwers on the field were conceding all those frustrating swing passes by design. If the Red Wolves offense was going to make the Blackshirts bleed, they were going to have to scratch and claw their way to the end zone. There would be no shots to the jugular on Diaco’s watch.
Diaco broke down his unconventional game plan during his unplanned Monday presser in which he also had to take time to set some things straight with his new buddies in the Nebraska media. Seeing a Sun Belt team rake up 497 yards doesn’t make for the sexiest stat line ever but as Diaco said on Monday, his prime directive is for his defense to do whatever it takes to ensure their opponent has one less point than the Huskers at the final whistle.
Sure, the Blackshirts could have been more aggressive last Saturday and gotten after the Red Wolves but why show what they’re really capable of if they don’t have to?
Kind of ruins the surprise for Oregon doesn’t it?
Now here’s where the Ducks are going to be in for a rude awakening. Since Diaco arrived on campus and flipped the 3-4 switch, the true potential of the revamped Blackshirts has been shrouded in a cloak of mystery.
Or, you could say he’s been keeping his defense holed up in a meat locker where they pound sides of beef into submission from sunup to sundown.
And suddenly, everything all makes sense.
Here’s an important detail about Diaco.
He’s an Italian who grew up in Cedar Grove, New Jersey, a mere 96 miles away from The City of Brotherly Love. It’s listed on your atlas as Philadelphia.
In other words, there’s a rather high likelihood that the Rocky saga has been fused to Diaco’s DNA.
In Rocky II, as we all know, Apollo Creed and Rocky Balboa squared off for a rematch. In their first fight, Rocky suffered a detached retina, an injury that could lead to much graver consequences than just being a career ender.
In order to protect his eye, which, as we all know, would go on to become the eye of the tiger in Rocky III, Mickey convinced Rocky to fight as a right hander instead of his natural southpaw. Keeping his left hand up to jab would make it much harder for Apollo to knock his eye out of his head. Then, when the time was right, Rocky would switch back to fighting left handed and pow, Apollo would have no idea what hit him.
And that’s exactly what is going to happen to the Ducks today.
The Blackshirts are finally going to come out swinging lefty and will spend the afternoon eating lightning and crapping thunder up and down the Autzen Stadium turf and knock Oregon’s block off.
Huskers win 37 – 31.