What Time Does The Husker Football Game Start Today The Osborne Identity – Former Coach Tom Osborne Looks to Restore Husker Luster

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The Osborne Identity – Former Coach Tom Osborne Looks to Restore Husker Luster

Saturday was a beautiful day in Lincoln, Neb. It was unseasonably warm, clear skies and a great day for a football game. And at sold-out Memorial Stadium, more than 80,000 raucous red-clad fans watched the Nebraska Cornhuskers decimate the Western Michigan University Broncos, 47-24.

This joyous Husker day was the culmination of a process that began last October.

Tired of the damage Bill Callahan had done to the program, and exhausted by athletic director Steve Pederson’s poor decision-making, the university fired Pederson and brought in legendary former head football coach Tom Osborne to take over as AD.

Before the ink was dry on Osborne’s new contract, Callahan was gone, and former defensive coordinator Bo Pelini was hired to take his place.

While Osborne promised “no miracles and no quick fixes,” it’s clear he and Pelini are expected to bring back some of the Husker culture that was lost during Callahan’s tenure.

Winning has been a part of Nebraska’s identity for decades, but it wasn’t just winning that made them special. That’s how they won.

As more and more colleges went pro, Nebraska was a proud anachronism, winning with goofy blood-and-guts football. They lined up their huge, homegrown linemen and their speedy, physical backs and dared you to try to stop them from stuffing the ball down your throat. Defensively, the Blackshirts defense was just as stubborn.

The fans knew their team was a comebacker and they were proud of it.

Then Osborne retired in 1997. His handpicked successor, Frank Solich, was successful but underachieving, and newly hired AD Pederson fired Solich in 2003. Callahan was hired and he quickly began trying to “modernize” Nebraska football.

The results were disastrous. Not only did the Huskers not win – they became a pass-first offense. Worse, the defense lost its edge.

A country that had always been united by its devotion to the Cornhuskers began to fall apart.

Get out of Pederson. Enter Osborne and Pelini.

Osborne, 71, preached patience in his return to Lincoln. The dominant Husker program wasn’t built overnight, he cautions, and it won’t be rebuilt overnight. Huskers didn’t play a perfect game: Pelini undoubtedly regrets the number of defensive mistakes made Saturday.

No one will really know how good these Huskers are until maybe September 27th, when they compete at home against Virginia Tech.

But on this Saturday afternoon, the sight of their old coach in the stadium and former Husker greats (Mike Rozier, Irving Friar and Brendan Stai, among others) in the stands was enough to make the Nebraska faithful believe their beloved program is on the way back.

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