Showing posts with label Big Ten. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Big Ten. Show all posts

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Bo Pelini: Classy to the #@#%&*$! end

Is there any doubt Nebraska is well rid of ex-football coach Bo Pelini?

If you had any lingering misgivings about NU's firing of the underachieving coach, who just was named head gridiron guy at the Economically Depressed University of Misfit Jocks Youngstown State, this article in the Omaha World-Herald ought to dispel them.

The newspaper came across an audio recording of Pelini's final meeting with his former players Dec. 2, and he went out the door in the classiest of manners. Or not.
A guy like (Eichorst) who has no integrity, he doesn’t even understand what a core value is," Pelini told players. "And he hasn’t understood it from the day he got here. I saw it when I first met with the guy.

“To have core values means you have to be about something, you have to represent something, you have to have something that is important to you. He is a f------ lawyer who makes policies. That’s all he’s done since he’s been here is hire people and make policies to cover his own ass.”

The World-Herald on Wednesday listened to an audio tape of Pelini’s address that night. He spoke conversationally, rarely raising his voice. It’s a rare window into the mindset of a coach who increasingly felt besieged by his own administration and fan base.

During the tape, Pelini expresses gratitude, support and advice for players. The majority of the tape, however, reveals Pelini’s thoughts about Eichorst. In the first minute of his talk, he uses two vulgarities associated with female genitalia to describe his former boss.

“I didn't really have any relationship with the A.D.,” Pelini said. “The guy, you guys saw him (Sunday), the guy is a total p----. I mean, he is, and he's a total c---.”

The administration’s lack of support, Pelini told players, wore on him and his family.

“I said to (assistant coach Rick Kaczenski) at one point, I said this job is killing me. I said I don't want to die doing this job. I meant it. I was like, I don't want to have a heart attack on this job.”

Pelini was fired Nov. 30 and was due to receive a $7.9 million buyout, mitigated slightly by his next salary.

On Wednesday, Youngstown State announced Pelini as its head football coach. He’ll return to his hometown and work under President Jim Tressel, who led Youngstown State to four FCS national championships.

During his introductory press conference Wednesday in Ohio, Pelini called Tressel “a president who understands football, who’s going to support me, something I don’t know if I’ve ever had.”
YEAH, Jim Tressel is just the kind of guy who oozes integrity and understanding of how to conduct a college football program the right way.

Remember that Tressel is the guy whose football program at Ohio State had gone rogue under his leadership. Remember, too, that Tressel is the guy who withheld what he knew about an improper-benefits scandal involving Buckeye players and a shady tattoo shop from his own administration and then lied to NCAA investigators. From ESPN at the time:
Former Ohio State coach Jim Tressel, who was forced to resign in May, committed the ultimate sin for a college coach when he withheld information about the scandal from OSU officials and NCAA investigators. In fact, according to the NCAA's infractions report released Tuesday, Tressel had four opportunities to reveal his knowledge of the scandal to the NCAA, but never once told the truth.

The NCAA also didn't buy Tressel's excuses for remaining silent. Before Tressel was forced to resign, he said he didn't reveal that former OSU quarterback Terrelle Pryor and other players were trading memorabilia for tattoos and cash because the tattoo-shop owner, Edward Rife, was under investigation for drug dealing. Tressel said he didn't want to jeopardize the federal investigation and feared for the safety of his players.

"The committee found [Tressel's reasoning] not to be credible," the report said. "The former head coach's inaction on four different occasions was in the committee's view, a deliberate effort to conceal the situation from the institution and the NCAA in order to preserve the eligibility of the aforementioned student-athletes, several of whom were key contributors to the team's highly successful 12-1 season in 2010."

SEC associate commissioner Greg Sankey, who serves on the NCAA's infractions committee, called Tressel's conduct "very serious and, frankly, very disappointing."

Now Meyer and the rest of the Buckeyes get to pay for Tressel's sins.

As part of its punishment, the NCAA made it nearly impossible for Tressel to become a college coach again. The NCAA hit Tressel with a five-year show-cause penalty until December 2016, under which any school that wants to hire him must submit a report to the NCAA detailing why it needs to employ him and how it would monitor him to ensure he doesn't break its rules again. Any school hiring Tressel during the five-year period would be subject to more severe sanctions if he cheats again.

Even if a school hires Tressel, he will be suspended for the first five regular-season games when he returns, as well as any postseason contests.
YEAH, Pelini's kind of guy is a man the NCAA doesn't trust to coach college football . . . but apparently is just the kind of guy to run Youngstown State. And Bo Pelini apparently is just the kind of guy a man who can't be trusted to coach college ball thinks ought to be coaching at Youngstown State.

Gotcha. It seems the birds of a feather have flocked together.

Jim Tressel's guy is a grown man with obvious anger issues who goes before a bunch of 18-22 year-old kids -- most of whom stiil have to be at NU. play for the Huskers and presumably stay in the good graces of their athletic director -- then speaks about that AD in the most vulgar and demeaning manner. "Oversharing" hardly begins to cover Pelini's actions in that meeting.

With a bunch of college kids.

For whom he set himself up as a role model.

Role model? Bat-s*** crazy cult leader, perhaps. Role model, no. Unless, of course, you expand the definition of "role model" to include being a hell of an example of how not to conduct oneself.

Pelini's not-so-greatest hits: EXCEPTIONALLY NSFW

I GUESS in Youngstown, role models do their damnedest to poison the well for the poor saps who have to clean up their overwrought messes. The Huskers' new football coach, Mike Riley, has his work cut out for him, it would seem.

And so do those Nebraska football players who thought Pelini was just the kind of man they wanted to be someday. Breaking up is hard to do, but for these poor guys, growing up is going to be even harder with a role model like their former coach.

Bo Pelini is not what Nebraska football has, by and large, been about. May it never be again.

In firing this underachieving hothead -- the Freudian concept of the human Id personified -- Shawn Eichorst has done not only Nebraska football a great favor but done a great favor to the entire state of Nebraska as well. If that makes the man a P-word and a C-word, those are labels he should wear with pride.

Pelini is Ohio's problem now. Thanks be to God . . . and Eichorst.

Monday, December 02, 2013

I second that emotion (No, not Pelini's)

I've been an LSU fan for as long as I can remember. I've been a Nebraska fan for more than 30 years.

My allegiance to both schools is unquestioned, and the only time I'm not bleeding purple and gold is when I'm bleeding scarlet and cream. I mean, I married a Nebraska grad. We were engaged at Memorial Stadium in Lincoln . . . at Husker football picture day.

'Nuff said.

There's only one thing about this Nebraska-fan thing. Now we're in the Big Ten. We're supposed to hate our "rival," Iowa. Yet I'm finding myself in the amen corner of . . . a Hawkeye football blogger, Adam Jacobi.

When the dude is right, the dude is right. And Jacobi nails it here on Black Heart, Gold Pants:
Then there's the remarkable stay of execution Bo Pelini got from AD Shawn Eichorst. The consensus, myself included, was that Peiini had coached his last game in Lincoln by the time the smoke cleared from his press conference. His team played terribly, he swiped his hat at a referee's face, he sniped at a sideline reporter at the half and he called an admittedly sketchy penalty "chicken shit" and dared his boss to fire him.

Eichorst did no such thing, instead publicly casting his support for his hot-tempered head coach. It's eminently possible that if Nebraska biffs its bowl game, the brass takes a renewed look around and sees a five-loss team with the most high-maintenance coach in the Big Ten (if not the nation) and decides it's not worth it. Rich Rodriguez's team laid down in its Gator Bowl appearance and Michigan axed him for it, so it's plausible. But it wouldn't make much sense, since if Eichorst wants to fire him, he could have done it right now without a problem.

Either way, Pelini's just been done the most impressive favor we've seen from an athletic director in quite some time, and if this quiets the hounds in Lincoln for a while so be it. Coaches get fired too often in this zero-sum game anyway. It's just, I've never seen a man so ready to be fired. It's amazing he didn't throw the microphones at the presser back at the reporters.

I'd be so sick of that crap if he were my school's head coach. I don't know how Nebraska fans even tolerate it. I know he's not like this every week (or really at all since 2010) but that's just embarrassing behavior from someone who's supposed to be one of the faces of a major university.
YES, yes, a million times yes! And there lies the rub.

Most Husker fans -- beaten down by a decade of incompetence and burned by then-AD Steve Pederson's firing of a 9-3 coach, Frank Solich, and his ushering in of the disastrous Bill Callahan reign of gridiron error -- will forgive Pelini anything short of first-degree murder or the forcible rape of Herbie Husker. Some even think his Incredible Hulk shtick is somehow admirable, because "he's passionate."

Well, Woody Hayes was "passionate" when he punched a Clemson linebacker, Charlie Bauman, toward the end of the 1978 Gator Bowl. He also was a hell of a lot better head coach than Bo Pelini.

PELINI'S ANTICS during and after Friday's Nebraska-Iowa "Heroes Game" was just half a psychotic break short of what got the Woodster, the Buckeyes' greatest coach ever, canned the very next day after 28 years at Ohio State and five national championships. I guess Bo just wasn't "passionate" enough, alas.

AFTER BEING half an inch from being taken off the field in handcuffs, Pelini then dared his boss to can him. Wow.

And then . . . and then . . . in one of the most stunning examples of cheap grace ever, he didn't get fired. Double wow. 

Then again, I guess a press release offering a cheap apology is all you need to get cheap grace -- particularly when it would cost a not-so-cheap $7.6 million to buy out the "penitent's" contract. Note to Husker AD Shawn Eichorst: Put your lawyer pants on and tweak the "for cause" language in all future contracts.

I don't think it's too much of a stretch to predict that Pelini's cheap grace from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln will pay a dividend of more cheap displays from Mr. Accountability and more costly public-relations black eyes for a school and an entire state.

Yeah, Husker fans love them some "passion." Let's hope they don't get thrown by that wild horse.

If they -- if we -- do, better change the Nebraska fight song to Warren Zevon's "Lawyers, Guns and Money." Because the chickenshit will have just hit the fan.

Videos of the year: The SEC edition

1) There was a 109-yard runback in a Big Ten game once. I think it involved a bad batch of bratwurst and a distant restroom at Camp Randall Stadium.

2) SEC, baby! SEC!

3) "Rammer jammer, yellow hammer, go to hell, Alabama!"

4) You have to begrudgingly hand it to Nick Saban for his professionalism and good sportsmanship. If that had been Nebraska's Bo Pelini instead of the Alabama coach on the wrong end of that wild finish, right now we'd be rearguing the whole deal about "Should crazy people be allowed to have automatic weapons . . . even if they make $3 million a year and we say 'passionate guy' instead of 'psychotic break'?"

Friday, June 07, 2013

Hooked on sticky-sweet phonics

As it turns out, the soon-to-be-former president of Everybody's Favorite University had it exactly bass-ackward.

Sorry Gordon Gee of THE Oh'o Stt Un'vrsty, it appears it's the kids at the SEC schools who can read just fine. The Big Ten? Not so much.

Caramel has three syllables, the middle of which is a short "a." Un, deux, trois . . . as in the number of weeks a certain soon-to-be-former university president has left on the job.

Anyone who can read can see this, and those who can see this inhabit all the schools the pres'dnt of THE Oh'o Stt Un'vrsty contends have an illiteracy problem. Oops.

"CAR ∙ ml"? Civilized people don't know what that is, but they suspect it has something to do with candy made from melted cars. Maybe it's popular in Michigan and Ohio, where they used to make such things.

But what do I know? I'm just a "damn Catholic."

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Flukes of CWS universe didn't get Big Ten memo

The baseball cards are marked.

The deck is stacked.

The fix is in.

The playing field tilts to the south. Or the South, as the case may be.

So how in the world does anybody expect the Big Ten to have a chance in hell of making the College World Series? Everybody knows Northern schools don't have a chance.

And in this June 2 story in the Omaha World-Herald, league coaches wonder why they shouldn't just take their gloves and . . . play in the summer and fall. Say to hell with the CWS and the whole crooked, Southern-fried, put-up deal that is college baseball:
Nebraska is now playing in a conference convinced that college baseball’s rules and structure prevent the Big Ten from fairly competing for the national spotlight.

The league-wide frustration has grown to the point that the conference’s most seasoned and respected voice, Minnesota’s John Anderson, is suggesting the Big Ten (and other northern schools) secede and form a new league that plays deeper into the summer.

Purdue’s having a milestone year, yet Boilermakers coach Doug Schreiber is still in full support of his own proposal to play a portion of the season in the fall. Most — if not all — league coaches want the NCAA to return to a true regional bracket for postseason play.

Radical? Yes. But the way Big Ten coaches see it, their squads are being forced to swing the bat with one arm, while everyone down south gets to use both.

“The current system that we have, we’ve learned, doesn’t produce the equity that it could,” Anderson said. “Part of the reason, people don’t want to change. The sport’s making money, there’s TV, growth, attendance — which kind of masks the problem.”

The problem is climate, and a mid-February season start date (still too early up north). It’s travel burdens (fiscal and physical). It’s academic concerns (Big Ten squads can miss no more than eight class days). It’s the NCAA tournament selection process and the overvalued RPI. It’s an investment in facilities (the Big Ten’s made recent strides), thus a lack of attendance and interest. It’s oversigning rules that Big Ten schools must abide by that most conferences don’t have; before finalizing annual rosters, the Big Ten allows its teams to commit one extra scholarship to no more than two players.

During multiple World-Herald interviews with several Big Ten coaches over the past month, the league veterans each presented this warning: Play baseball in this conference and you’ll be staring at an impassable uphill trek to the sport’s summit.
WITH THIS in mind -- this laundry list of injustice heaped upon the poor, beleaguered and put-upon Big Ten baseball programs . . . these disrespected Nanooks of the North in spikes -- we welcome to the 2012 College World Series a couple of schools from obviously tropical climes.

So, a subarctic Omaha greeting goes out to CWS contestants the Seawolves of New York's Stony Brook University and the Golden Flashes of Ohio's Kent State University. (NB: Kent is in the subtropical part of Ohio; Columbus, home of Big Ten member Ohio State, is in the tundra.)

On the other hand, though, maybe it's not the weather.

And maybe it's not a giant NCAA baseball-rigging scandal concocted by a nefarious cartel of Southern universities.

Maybe it's something else, Big Ten. Maybe, just maybe . . . it's you.

Monday, August 01, 2011

Embarrassing moments in journalism

If you're over 30 and still toiling away at a one-lung TV station in Hastings, Neb., there's probably a good reason for that.

Saturday, July 02, 2011

And now a word from our sponsor. . . .

OK, so I've pretty much been addicted to BTN's "Nebraska Days" coverage marking the Huskers' entrance into the Big Ten Conference.

The warm glow of exceptionally pure Husker crack bathes my brain as I nod off in front of the HDTV, and I keep seeing this commercial from Omaha's own food and agribusiness conglomerate, ConAgra. If I've seen it once, I've seen it 20 times.

And I cannot get enough of it. It is my new favorite TV ad.

It just strikes me as pitch-perfect in depicting the life of college students and the parents who love them.
Particularly the dad. Dad is awesome.

I ALSO love it when Mom surveys the mass if comatose young-adult humanity crashed before her in the "student residence," then asks "Are they dead?"

"That one's breathing," Dad reports back.

Perfect. Just perfect. More, please.
"That's your son."

"That's our son."

"Don't remind me."
IS IT just me, or is anybody else really craving some Manwich right now?

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

On Iowegians: We pity the fools

The things you learn from joining the Big Ten Conference, as Nebraska has just done.

For example, did you know that the state of Iowa is even lamer than you originally thought? I mean, my God, they think this is funny.

Really? Is this the best you got, Iowa? Is this the best the comedic mind of Des Moines media can manage? Well, no, but he left for a bigger job at an AM daytimer in Pixley, so this is all WHO-TV can muster -- total mindlessness.

LISTEN, you Idiots Out Wandering Around, our governor in Nebraska is Dave Heineman. C'mon, the man is the Pillsbury Doughboy . . . on barbiturates.

And you pass up that comedic gold mine in favor of dressing up a Missouri fan in his Sunday best and painting a Nebraska logo on his best hat?

That's all you effing got?

Too bad. You will have invited an overwhelming retaliatory strike by Omaha World-Herald columnist Mike Kelly -- a pique-fueled bombardment of stats, rankings and civic-minded anecdotes proving how up-to-date everything is in Omaha and greater Nebraska -- and you will have invited it for something as totally piss poor as that WHO-TV video.

Iowegians. They never learn.

Monday, June 14, 2010

More crap from the No. 2 state

Everything's bigger in Tejas.

First of all, there's the outsized ego of its state university. And don't try to convince University of Tejas fans theirs isn't the only school in Tejas, if not the world -- they won't believe you.

And the "bigger in Tejas" list also includes, no doubt, the feedlots. They'd have to be to hold as much bulls*** as what flows out of the Land of Big Hair and Small Brains every time Jennifer Floyd Engel posts another column in the
Fort Worth Star-Telegram:
One of the best rivalries in sports will not be the same; just ask Arkansas what happened to its rivalries after leaving the SWC. Can you imagine the Aggie War Hymn with "goodbye to Louisiana State University"?

Of course, Governor Good Hair wants A&M to stay with Texas.

What he needs to be doing is trying to save the Big XII. I do not say this lightly since this league obviously had fatal flaws, starting with its clearly overmatched commissioner, Dan Beebe, and a lot of schools who did not know their role.

And I am talking to my alma mater, Mizzou. Great job being played by The Big Ten, and enjoy begging for inclusion in the Mountain West. My check is not in the mail, nor will it be until heads roll.

I am also including Nebraska, which idiotically believes going to The Big Ten will turn back the clock to 1990, when 'roided partial qualifiers ruled the college football landscape. How smart are Nebraskans? They actually buy this "more aligned with culture and academic mission" nonsense being spewed Friday.

And who hasn't heard Nebraska referred to as Harvard on the Plains?

In fact, can everybody please dispense with acting like this is about academics, or worrying about being left behind, or anything except for money and super conferences.

Yes, The Big XII is dead, killed by corn shuckers, Tigers and greedy blank-blankers. And while this wake has turned into a roast, look for everybody to be mourning its demise in hindsight.
'ROIDED partial qualifiers? Harvard on the Plains?

Well, there is this story in the
Omaha World-Herald. Maybe that's where Ms. Jennifer Floyd Engel learned about NU's reputation:
Few doubt the University of Nebraska-Lincoln can more than hold its own on the football fields of the Big Ten.

A bigger question is how it stacks up in the classroom and the lab. Nebraska's flagship university ranks lower in the U.S. News & World Report rankings and pulls in fewer research dollars than all of its new partners in the nation's most academically prestigious athletic conference.

But regardless of UNL's current standing, almost any university would envy the upward trajectory the school has been on academically over the past decade.

Its U.S. News ranking among comprehensive public universities has jumped from 57th to 43rd, a measure of its rising reputation.

Its federal research haul has more than doubled.

The school is attracting more of the state's brightest students, and more students than ever from out of state.

Were it not for the marked improvements of the past decade, Chancellor Harvey Perlman said he doubts UNL would be the newest member of the Big Ten.

Now that that new affiliation will have UNL running and collaborating with some of the most prestigious public universities in the land, Perlman and other campus leaders say they see no reason UNL can't aspire to loftier heights in the decades ahead.

“It's a new bar for academics and research,” said Ellen Weissinger, UNL's interim vice chancellor for academic affairs. “Joining the Big Ten is going to accelerate our pace.”

UNL's upward trajectory did not go unnoticed when the Big Ten's presidents and chancellors considered granting the school entry to the conference, said Lou Anna K. Simon, president of Michigan State University and head of the Big Ten's board.

While athletics and football were obviously the initial reason UNL was considered, she said, scholarship is taken too seriously in the Big Ten to add a school that was not a serious academic player.

“There was more to this than just a football game,” Simon said Saturday. “I think all of my colleagues felt very comfortable that Nebraska was an extraordinary fit.”

The recent boost in UNL's academic firepower has its roots in a period of serious introspection during the 1990s.
IT'S REALLY a shame that the best a sports columnist for an also-ran metro daily in north Tejas can muster is rank name calling. Then again, Tejas is the World's Biggest Feedlot, and the fumes from all that Chanel No. 2 must have gone to a Mizzou gal's head.

It's not like it would have taken much. As folks up here are keen enough to observe, the University of Missouri is close enough to the Ozarks to see your first cousin from there, and she/he is lookin' right purdy.

As much as anything, Engel's outpouring of bile reminds me of what became pretty much a yearly ritual for Missouri football fans after having their asses handed to them by the Huskers. Of course, they often didn't fare any better in the insult department than they did the football department.

I remember when my wife and I drove to Columbia in 1983 for the Nebraska-MU game. Of course, Nebraska won.

And naturally, some drunk-ass Mizzou student was staggering outside the stadium afterward screaming
"Nebraska sucks! Nebraska sucks!" at Husker fans (who, by the way, applaud visiting teams in Lincoln, win or lose). Of course, we responded by chanting back "Nebraska wins! Nebraska wins!"

He shut up. Really, some things are just too easy.

LIKE ENGELS succumbing to the temptation to just "phone it in" by ripping off the patented insult-column style of well-known "Colorado malcontent" Woody Paige. She imitates the Denver Post sports columnist OK; I do it better.

nobody approaches the real deal. And only a Tejas bulls*** artist would think she could.

That kind of baseless arrogance only can mean one thing. When UT starts up The Longhorn Network, Jennifer Floyd Engel probably will be the first hire.

Talk about your match made in Hillbilly Heaven.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

The Marlin Perkins Report

And I'll stay here, on the news set, while Jim goes around back to flush out the man-eating raccoon.

Welcome to the morning news in Michigan.

Sweet Jesus! What have we Nebraskans gotten ourselves into with all this Big Ten stuff?

On the other hand, if Michigan coons made the road trip down to Lincoln, then got loose in the studio for the
Husker Baseball TV Show, it would be more excitement than Mike Anderson's squad has generated in the last two seasons.

Oh, mother of Mary!

Tired of Bevo's s***, Huskers move out

If he wouldn't be embarrassed, and I wouldn't be embarrassed, I would give Tom Osborne a bear hug right now.

Harvey Perlman, too.

They have led Nebraska fans out of Egypt land. And the hypocrites of the Big 12 Conference let our people go.

Or something like that.
Like they could stop us.

I THINK Tom Shatel puts it right well this morning in the Omaha World Herald:
Goodbye, Manhattan; hello, East Lansing. Goodbye, Boulder; hello, Columbus. Goodbye, Austin; hello, Iowa City.

It was a big day, the biggest day, and nobody was bigger than Harvey Perlman and Tom Osborne.

The chancellor and athletic director/legend-at-large put on a show at the regents meeting. They laid it all out. And while they were at it, they laid out Missouri and Texas. It was powerful. It was clinical. Nebraska, eerily quiet all these weeks, finally spoke up and turned up the volume for all the Big 12 to hear.

Perlman called out Mizzou for being the one to start the expansion circus.

Osborne talked about schools in the Big 12 that were asking NU to stay and all the while selling themselves to not one, not two but three other leagues.

Perlman said the Big 12 presidents wouldn't commit to staying in the league if Colorado and Missouri both left.

And then, in a downright delicious passage, Perlman talked about calling Texas' bluff. And how he asked Texas to commit its TV rights to the Big 12 if it was serious about the league, and how Texas declined.

Brilliant, Harvey. The Steve Pederson years are now forgiven.

Then, finally, the money quote from Osborne: “One team leaving does not break up a conference. Two teams leaving does not break up a conference. Six teams leaving breaks up a conference."

Boom. They should engrave those words on a plaque, or on the side of Memorial Stadium. Maybe put them on the final Big 12 football trophy.
AND THAT, boys and girls, is how a lot of us have become something we never really considered until now -- Big Ten fans. Happy Big Ten fans.

Goodbye Big 12. And good riddance.

Wednesday, June 09, 2010

He who laughs last. . . .

. . . laughs loudest.

Bo Pelini, to put it in Facebook speak, likes this.

HERE'S an Omaha World-Herald classic from December:
Bo Pelini had played it cool walking off the field, telling Texas coaches to go win a national title.

But he heard about a conflict at the threshold of the tunnel. Seemed a Texas fan and somebody from NU had exchanged words.

Bo marched toward the scene. Who was it? Bo wanted to engage the Texas fan.

Told nothing happened, he went back toward the locker room, where he saw Marc Boehm, NU assistant athletic director.

“Marc, I want to see (Big 12 head of officiating) Walt Anderson in there right (expletive) now!” Pelini shouted.

“BCS!” Pelini said as he entered the locker room. “That's why they make that call!”

Nebraska lost another heartbreaker to Texas Saturday. You saw it. Felt it. What you didn't feel were the post-game aftershocks reverberating through the concrete tunnels of Cowboys Stadium.

It hit hardest the Pelinis, who nearly orchestrated a monumental upset.

The reason why they didn't, according to Bo's and Carl's immediate reactions, was the officials' decision to add one second to the game clock after Colt McCoy's last throw out of bounds.

Originally, the clock expired, sending a flood of Nebraska players onto the field. But a review changed that call, led to Texas' game-winning kick and sent the Pelinis into madness.

According to Dan Beebe, Big 12 commissioner, officials did the right thing.

According to Walt Anderson, officials did the right thing. Where was the clock when the ball hit something out of bounds?

“There was a second left,” Anderson said.

But nothing or nobody could convince Bo Pelini.

“I want an explanation!” Pelini yelled outside his locker room.

Standing in that tunnel quietly watching him: Harvey Perlman, Paul Meyers, Eric Crouch.

“Get Coach Osborne down here!” Pelini said. “Can you go get Coach Osborne?”

Minutes later, Athletic Director Tom Osborne walked slowly toward the locker room in black trench coat. He entered the double doors to meet Pelini.

From outside the doors, one word could be heard loudest: “Cheaters!”

Then Osborne strode back to the field, where Texas was wrapping up its trophy presentation. En route to midfield, Osborne said to a World-Herald reporter: “Where is Dan Beebe?''

Beebe was standing at the 40-yard line talking to Assistant Commissioner Ed Stewart, a former Nebraska All-America linebacker.

As Osborne reached Beebe, the commissioner extended his hand. But Osborne didn't shake it. Osborne pointed at Beebe and said, “Would you go see Bo? Right now?''

By then, Nebraska Chancellor Harvey Perlman had come on to the field. Perlman and Osborne walked with Beebe off the field and down a stadium tunnel.

The three exchanged no words on the walk. Down the tunnel, Osborne walked three steps in front of Beebe and Perlman walked to Beebe's right.
OF COURSE, you don't make a high-stakes decision like blowing up the Big 12 Conference just because you see Texas getting every benefit of the doubt because the conference's slot in the BCS championship was at stake.

(I'm not saying the call that saved Texas' hide was wrong, but I am questioning whether, if the Huskers had been in Texas' position in that game --
with the Longhorns' shot at the national title still at stake -- whether Big 12 officials don't let the clock run out and call it a night.)

But the fragrant aroma of a dish called revenge being served cold, much as a bowl of gazpacho, sure is a wonderful thing to greet you as you step into the Big Ten café.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Go Big . . . 14?

If this holds up, this is great news for Nebraska.

And a big "Hook THIS" for Texas, which will be stuck in a dead league, the Big 12.

THE WORD comes from sports-radio WHB in Kansas City, and already the website is about to melt down:
The Big Ten Conference has extended initial offers to join the league to four universities including Missouri and Nebraska from the Big 12, according to multiple sources close to the negotiations.

While nothing can be approved until the Big Ten presidents and chancellors meet the first week of June in Chicago, the league has informed the two Big 12 schools, Notre Dame and Rutgers that it would like to have them join. It is not yet clear whether the Big Ten will expand to 14 or 16 teams but sources indicated Missouri and Nebraska are invited in either scenario. Notre Dame has repeatedly declined the opportunity to join the Big Ten. If Notre Dame remains independent, Rutgers would be the 14th team. The Big Ten would then decide whether to stop at 14 or extend offers to two other schools. If Notre Dame joins, sources say an offer will be extended to one other school making it a 16-team league.

In order for the University of Missouri to join the Big Ten, the Missouri Board of Regents will still have to approve the move. Sources close to the governing body say the Big Ten has told officials that Mizzou could add $1.3 million per month in revenue to the lucrative Big Ten Television Network. The Big Ten Network is currently offered on basic cable to very few of over 7 million residents living in Missouri television markets and adding it throughout the state will be a windfall for the conference.

Big Ten representatives have also told Missouri officials they would like to have the entire expansion process wrapped up this summer with a formal announcement coming no later than July.