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Old 08-03-2008, 02:21 AM  
alanm alanm is offline
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NU must find hammer to start the rebuilding

NU must find hammer to start the rebuilding
Published Sunday, Aug. 3, 2008
There will be blood.

As Nebraska football practice begins Monday, that is more than a mantra for Bo Pelini's first season. It's the baseline. Win or lose, there must be blood.

Let's face it: This season is not about a number of wins. That sounds funny around a place that used to spit out nine victories a year like a factory. It's just the truth.

When you've lost your identity, and that identity was based on physical play and intimidation, the first step to recovery is to make a fist.

Eight, seven, six wins, whatever. The record and level of bowl destination are not nearly as important as how the destination is reached. The level of expectation for the initial run of the Pelini Era has nothing to do with games won. It's more about how games are played.

When I've been asked for my expectation for 2008, I've half-jokingly said, "There are three things.

"One, put Chase Daniel on his butt. Once. Twice would be nice.

"Two, hold Kansas to 40 points.

"Three, make a bowl game."

If you think that's facetious, you must have been away at the bathroom all of last season.

Nebraska football lost its manhood the past four years. We don't need to recap the carnage. But if there's a lesson learned from the past era (error), it's how much Husker fans care about their manhood.

They don't expect to win the Big 12 every year. They do expect the players to look coached and like they care.

They may not expect to beat Missouri at home this year. But they expect their side to play well and make sure that the Tigers not only know they were in a game, but limp home if possible.

They don't expect to give up 70 points to any Kansas team, unless Bill Self is coaching it.

They don't expect a linebacker wearing their jersey to half-heartedly push an opposing running back into the end zone. If he does, they expect him to lose his scholarship.

Passion. Effort. Culture. These are the buzzwords that have many Husker fans I know pumped for this season. They say they can handle an 8-4 or 7-5 season if it comes with 12 games of hustle and competence.

They say, too, that if there are 12 games of hustle and passion, the wins will come. There's something to be said for that.

Of course, buzzwords don't win games. Pelini has played his role as the anti-Bill Callahan to the hilt. He's said all the right things, guaranteeing only effort and a team that will compete and care.

Right now, Pelini is all promise and hype. But there's every reason for the Bolievers to have faith. Pelini's track record (at Oklahoma, LSU and, heck, Nebraska in 2003) says that he will go after Daniel and Todd Reesing and that he might be able to take an under-coached roster and make it sing.

Pelini also has the advantage of following Callahan and a system that didn't develop or motivate college football players. With Tom Osborne at his side, Pelini will have a honeymoon of at least one season, and perhaps two seasons, if the Huskers are competitive and look coached. Fans will wait to see if Pelini can recruit as long as it looks like he can teach the fundamentals of tackling.

That's how far this thing has fallen, though Pelini is conceding nothing.

"I've never gone into a game that I didn't expect to win," Pelini said on Friday. "But right now, we need to get to where we are competitive in every game. And I don't see anybody on our schedule that we can't compete with."

It all starts on Monday. And it sounds like the Huskers better strap it on.

I asked Pelini if he had to teach his team how to tackle. I was half-joking. Pelini wasn't, saying, "That's something we'll work on from day one."

He added that pads not only will be worn in practice, but used. There will be full contact scrimmages and lots of "1's vs. 1's." All season.

"I heard that in the past few years here they didn't practice in pads much," Pelini said. "That's going to change. We are going to work in full pads quite a bit. If you are going to play physical, you have to be physical all the time, not just some of the time.

"We need to run the ball on people. We have a good line and good backs. We need to establish that. That starts in practice, every day."

Nebraska lost its swagger long ago. In fact, the last time it had anything resembling swagger was the 2003 Alamo Bowl. Guess who was coaching that game? Pelini, who oozes swagger.

Can you teach swagger? How quickly can manhood be restored? There are a lot of very excited people who can't wait to find out.

"Rome wasn't built in a day," Pelini cautioned.

Yeah, but it's time for the Christians to start playing like lions.

Contact the writer: 444-1025, tom.shatel@owh.com
http://www.omaha.com/index.php?u_page=1921

It's that time of year again!
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Old 08-03-2008, 02:22 AM   #2
alanm alanm is offline
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For the Husker fans and anyone else that gives a shit.
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Old 08-03-2008, 02:43 AM   #3
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Old 08-03-2008, 02:45 AM   #4
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The thing I like about this game is how many times Mizzou and Chase Daniel are mentioned. We're in your heads.
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Old 08-03-2008, 02:53 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by beer bacon View Post
The thing I like about this game is how many times Mizzou and Chase Daniel are mentioned. We're in your heads.
Make no mistake their going to be ready for Missouri.
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It bears repeating, **** Herm, Pioli, Haley, and Crennel for ****ing up my franchise for a goddamn decade.
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Old 08-03-2008, 02:54 AM   #6
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The thing I like about this game is how many times Mizzou and Chase Daniel are mentioned. We're in your heads.
Heck after last year EVERYONE is in our heads. Not to mention we have to go back down to Lubbock where the infamous 70-10 beatdown occurred in 2004.

Looks like I picked a hell of a year to stop sniffing glue.
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Old 08-03-2008, 02:56 AM   #7
alanm alanm is offline
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That and the fact that Shatel graduated from Missouri and used to cover the Tigers when he lived in Missouri.
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Old 08-03-2008, 06:26 AM   #8
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Make no mistake their going to be ready for Missouri.
They're going to be Missouri.

They're going to come in with a fire and a purpose to lay down some hurt and figure out in the last 3 minutes or so they just don't have it to hang.

I'd figure a 10 pt game...
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Old 08-03-2008, 07:58 AM   #9
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Old 08-03-2008, 10:04 AM   #10
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Good read. Since I moved up here I've just watched to see what was going on with the Red. It's kinda interesting. As for me, I'm kind of pulling for them in a bastard brother kind of way. If they come around and become not embarassing, it can only help the Big 12 North. As long as they keep losing to KU.

Smoking Chase Daniel is just gravy.
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Old 08-03-2008, 10:07 AM   #11
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Old 08-03-2008, 12:46 PM   #12
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Make no mistake their going to be ready for Missouri.
Spel chek is fur puzies.
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Old 08-03-2008, 01:09 PM   #13
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We've got your friggin hammer right here.
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Old 08-03-2008, 01:20 PM   #14
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sounds like calihan was a great coach

maybe the raiders will hire him back
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Old 08-03-2008, 05:19 PM   #15
alanm alanm is offline
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sounds like calihan was a great coach

maybe the raiders will hire him back
Jets got him. He's the OLine coach and Co Offensive coordinator.
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