Heres the thing, maybe I’m getting a little sentimental with age or maybe I’m a little home sick or maybe I miss being as busy as I was a year ago but this time in 2013 I was wrapping up the edit and preparing to take my movie all over the country. The only thing was – I didn’t know it was going to be all over the country. I thought I’d be showing it all over Nebraska. We actually ended up showing it in 63 cities in 15 states, all the way from California to Florida to New York City. Yep we showed our movie everywhere. I’ve even shipped copies to Germany and Japan.
I met so many people that I couldn’t begin to talk about them all. I met the coach of the Ainsworth high school football team. In his first season, he coached them their first win in 6 seasons. Full of energy, he convinced me that they were on their way to winning state. He believed in his kids and he believed in himself. I got reacquainted with a classmate from my elementary school who set up the screening in the middle of Manhattan. 20+ years later and she still helped an old friend. I drank beers with every local in every small town: Scottsbluff, Alliance, Seward, Grand Island, York, Papillion, Kearney, and so many many more. I had the best steak I have ever had at Tim Jorgensons house in North Platte. I doubt that I’ll ever have the opportunity to do something as amazing as that tour ever again. I owe Dave “Husker” Max so much for setting it all up.
The greatest night I’ve ever had was the screening at the Rococo in my hometown, Lincoln. I can’t even begin to type out all the great things that happened. I got to watch my film with 400 of my new favorite people. The Husker Elvis’s were there and the Real Life Herbie Husker also made an appearance. Milt Tenopir and Jason Peter showed up to watch with us. Jason was kind enough to ask me to speak at Larry the Cable Guys annual golf outing the following month. I made Larry laugh. It was a cool moment for me.
So the reason that I’m writing this article is to ask everyone that came to a screening to send me there stories for my blog and also just so I have them to take out on a rainy day in 2032. Please tell me what you thought. Did we meet? What do you remember? Why are you a Husker? Do you view the whole thing differently now? If you can share a story with me please do. I want to keep this community feeling going because I have missed it. If you don’t have anything to add then please share it with someone who might.
- Published in Uncategorized
My name is Chris, I live in Fremont, NE., and I am a life-long Husker Fan! I am just a regular, hard-working Nebraskan who loves Husker sports, but has a passion for Husker Football in particular that is hard to explain through words. The best way to share my passion is by sharing a true story of how I felt after defeating Miami in the 1995 Orange Bowl.
Like many Nebraska Fans, immediately after defeating Miami in the Orange Bowl, on that cold, winter night in January, I was out on the streets of Fremont at 10:30 pm., driving and celebrating the win by proudly holding a Husker flag out my drivers window with one hand as I was driving and honking my horn with the other as were many other people, quite to my surprise to be honest! It was a spontaneous feeling of something I had to do… almost involuntary in nature. At the time, I had just broke my right leg at work with a nasty split of my tibia bone in half for 5 inches vertically. Let me just say, I couldn’t sleep because of the pain for 72 hours after breaking it. But, nothing was going to stop me from celebrating what I knew was going to be the 1994 National Championship!
The next day, after hearing about the celebration that was going to happen at the Devaney Center, two friends of mine and I, drove down to Lincoln to go to the Devaney Center, and be a part of the celebration and welcome home the Husker National Championship team!
As we arrive, we find a place to park as close as possible because of my broken leg, and at that time, the streets and sidewalks were covered in ice, so I knew it wasn’t going to be easy for me, but still ended up 4 blocks away from the Devaney Center. Nonetheless, nothing was going to stop me from being a part of the celebration, so I decided to leave my crutches in the car because I feared I had a better chance of falling using them on the icy walkways than if I just hobbled the entire way, so that is what I did. I hobbled in pain up to the Devaney Center, but the team was late in arriving from the airport so this huge crowd, along with my friends and I, had to stand outside and wait for the doors to open. To be honest, I thought I had made a big mistake in going at this point in time because my leg was causing me great pain, and apparently I must have shown it because the group of UNL students standing around me noticed and offered to pick me up and hold me off the ground while we stood there and waited. Although I greatly appreciated the gesture, I had to decline… I thought to myself, “I can’t look like a wimp in front of all these people”.
Thank goodness it wasn’t much longer before the doors to the Devaney Center opened, but since the seating was open to the public, it was first come first serve on getting a seat and what happened next I wasn’t prepared for! There was a wave of humanity rushing through the doors, everybody running to get a seat before all of them were taken… me included! I was hopping along on one leg as fast as possible and thankfully my friends and I got seats about halfway up the Devaney and settled in while waiting for the team and Tom Osborne to enter the arena. How we were able to get seats I will never know because I think the entire place was filled within 10 minutes of the doors opening? Regardless, I was one of the happiest people on earth that day and my adrenaline pumping helped keep my mind off my broken leg.
After sitting and proudly cheering for Coach Osborne and all the players who worked so hard to get that first championship for Coach Osborne, and enjoying, for me, what was a once in a lifetime experience, my friends and I were headed back home to Fremont, each of us unable to stop smiling.
Even me… broken leg and all!
Well, later that night, after all the jubilation was starting to wear off, the pain in my leg was starting to increase. I was hoping it wouldn’t keep getting worse, but by the next morning, the throbbing pain was bad enough that the pain medication I was given by my doctor wasn’t working at all. Therefore, I scheduled an emergency appointment with my orthopedic surgeon later that day. After having x-rays taken of my leg, the doctor was looking at them, and acting baffled, asked me, “Have you been putting a lot of weight on our broken leg or been doing anything that could possibly have caused your break to become worse than it was to begin with?” You know… I proudly answered, “No sir, I haven’t done anything out of the ordinary that could have possibly caused the break to become worse?” Anyway, although it took four weeks longer than the doctor predicted for me to be healed enough to get back to my normal daily routine, I recovered fine and continued on, not regretting what I went through to be a part of Husker history for a single second!
That’s what it means to be a part of Husker Nation as a Husker Fan!
GO BIG RED!!
- Published in Fan Perspective
I have never lived in Nebraska, but I inherited rooting for the Cornhuskers from my father. Though I was raised in Oregon (and have lived in California for 27 years now), my parents both grew up in Nebraska (Broken Bow), leaving in their early 20′s. Growing up (I was born in ’64), my family never had a television. Whenever Nebraska played on tv, my uncle would drive down from Washington state, and bring his portable tv. We watched the Cornhuskers! Then every year on New Years, he would also come down and we’d watch the bowl games. I think that is why I love college football so much today. It is really the only sport I pay much attention to.
In 1984, my dad, my uncle and myself drove from Oregon down to Pasadena to watch Nebraska play UCLA at the Rose Bowl stadium. My first look at the Huskers “live”. We did the same in 1988, though I was now living in central California. We try to catch Nebraska as much as we can when they play on the west coast. 1998 was a great year, as we got to watch them play twice. Cal in Berkeley, and then in San Diego for the Holiday Bowl against Arizona. Also, I was able to take my dad to the 2001 National Championship game versus Miami in the Rose Bowl.
Though he grew up in Nebraska, my dad had never had the opportunity to attend a game in Lincoln. My dream was to take him to a game in Lincoln. The perception from afar is that Nebraska football has been sold out for 40+ years, and seats are just not available. How was I gonna pull this off? But a number of years ago, my niece graduated from Biola, and decided to do her graduate studies at Baylor, a Big 12 opponent. I had just found my way into Memorial Stadium! When a game in Lincoln came up on Baylor’s schedule, I gave my niece my credit card info and told her to get us some tickets. I think we ended up with about 8 seats. We had a grand time experiencing the Big Red Wave in Lincoln! One amazing experience on that trip happened in Phoenix, Arizona. I flew out of Sacramento, and my sister flew out of Portland, Oregon. We met in Phoenix, and had the same flight from Phoenix to Omaha. I was amazed that there were no less than 15 or 20 people getting on that plane way out west in Phoenix, headed to Memorial Staduim for the game! My dad had such a good time that several months later he told me, “That was fun. We should do that again sometime!” A comment totally out of character for my dad. So, a couple of years later, we went back for a game versus Texas A&M. The only disappointment, is that our two experiences at Memorial Stadium both came during the rather forgetable Bill Callahan era. None-the-less, the game day in Memorial Stadium experience is one I will never forget. I lost my dad 2 1/2 years ago, but I will be forever grateful that I was able to give him the Husker home game experience. The tradition lives on. In December 2010, I took my wife (married July 2010) on a belated honeymoon to San Diego. She was less than impressed by the Husker’s performance that day in the Holiday Bowl, but she was sufficiently impressed by the major college football game day experience. Just wait ’till I take her to Lincoln someday . . .
- Published in Fan Perspective
From: Luke Binder
Hey Ryan! I know that I’m probably the 800,000th person to email you today. I really hope that you get a chance to read this. It would mean a lot to me. Okay, I grew up in the small town of Davey, Nebraska – a little north of Lincoln. I got the privilege to go to my first Husker game with my dad for my sixth birthday present on September 30th, 1995. They played Washington State that day. The Huskers won 35-21 and I have been a fan ever since. In 2000, my family moved back to Denver (where my dad is from). I still wore my red proudly and I can remember being cussed out by CU fans for it. Oh well, I loved my Huskers and I loved Nebraska. Fast forward to 2009, my parents divorced after 25 years of marriage. Obviously, I was crushed by it and I did not know how to make sense of any of it. So, I made up my mind that I would move back to Nebraska and try to figure out my life. I packed up my 1989 Buick Century Station-wagon and head east on I-80. I had no clue what I was doing or why I was leaving mountains for cornfields. However, I did know that I was getting season tickets for Husker football. I searched CraigsList for season tickets. Not surprisingly, I had little to no luck. I was about to give up until I saw a student selling her tickets for “the best offer.” Needless to say, I emailed her back immediately and offered her $400. Three hours later, I had season tickets. That season of Husker football saved my life. I got to attend every home game with lifelong best friend who I was reunited with in Lincoln. I witnessed the thrill of the 300 consecutive sellouts party and victory against Louisiana-Lafayette. I experienced the joy of the comeback victory against Missouri (after which my friend and I ran down O Street screaming “Go Big Red”). On the contrast, I witnessed the horror of Iowa State and 8 turnovers. However, it was made up for two weeks later when we upset Oklahoma 10-3. I can remember walking down Vine after the game and thinking to myself that everything was going to be all right. It was a great feeling- for the first time in a long time, I was genuinely happy. Two weeks later, the Huskers beat Kansas State 17-3 to win the Big XII North. I was fortunate enough to be able to take my nephew to that game which was also his first Husker game. I can remember walking back to the car with him, it was a special moment. I realized (again) how Husker football represents so much more than football. It helped me see the beauty of life, once again. It helped me see how the ups and downs are a part of life, neither one defines you. It helped me see that at the end of the day, family is the most important thing in life. Most importantly, a season of Husker football taught me that every Saturday in the fall 85,000 of the best people in the world gather at One Memorial Place and prove that win or lose there is NO PLACE LIKE NEBRASKA. I will always treasure being able to be a part of that magical atmosphere for an entire season. I moved back to Denver in December of 2009. I have a great relationship with both of my parents, once again. Life is as back to normal as it can be after a divorce that changes the way a person’s world looks. Yet, through all of the ups and downs, I know that I can always count on God and Husker football to be there for me – win or lose. I’m a part of Husker nation and that’s a family that can never be taken from me. God bless.
- Published in Fan Perspective