Saturday, November 19, 2011

Bay Area Huskers E-News 11/17/11

Hey Bay Area Husker Fans!
I’m busting at the seams with pride.  Pride in our team, pride in our fans and pride in the values we Nebraskans hold so dear.  Call it what you want…(an epiphany, soul searching, memorable, thought provoking etc), the pre-game prayer with both teams huddled and kneeling around Coach Brown was and exceptional moment in college football.  Although the Huskers came up with a hard fought win against the Nitanny Lions, the real winners were the cathartic healing process for Penn State and the demonstration of sportsmanship that several people in attendance called palpable and inspirational.  There are a number of articles below that you should read to get a feel for how others tried to describe the event. 

Now, on to the next game at Michigan.  Not sure what ESPN has against us, but they sure like putting us on early in the morning out here in California.  Once again we are on TV at 9 a.m.  The Huskers need to win their next two division games against Michigan and Iowa to vie for a chance at the Big Ten Championship game. 

Lots of good stuff below including some great pieces from the Alumni Association and the Foundation.  Enjoy!
Go Big Red (White and Blue),

Watch Parties:
Once again the game will be on early out here.  Kickoff will be at 9 a.m. Pacific time and ESPN will have the coverage.  All of our watch sites will be ready for us and Jack’s will have their great breakfast menu (with hot coffee this time ;o).  Hope to see you there!


Record: 8-2, 4-2
Rankings: Coaches-16; AP-17
Last Game:  def. Penn State, 17-14
Coach: Bo Pelini
Career/NU Record: 38-14/4th year
vs. UM: 0-0

Record: 8-2, 4-2
Rankings: Coaches-18; AP-20
Last Game:  def. Illinois, 31-14
Coach: Brady Hoke
Career|UM Record: 55-53/9th year | 8-2/1st year
vs. NU: 0-1

The Matchup
Nebraska completes the road portion of its 2011 schedule on Saturday when it travels to Ann Arbor, Mich., to take on the Wolverines in a Big Ten Legends Division matchup. The matchup of two of the four winningest programs in college football history will be televised by ESPN and kickoff is set for Noon ET at Michigan Stadium.
The Huskers improved to 4-2 in the Big Ten and 8-2 overall with a hard-fought 17-14 victory at Penn State on Saturday. Nebraska jumped to a 17-0 lead midway through the third quarter and held off a late Nittany Lion rally to secure the victory. The win kept Nebraska one game behind Legends Divison leader Michigan State with two games to play in the regular season. The victory also allowed Nebraska to climb two spots to 17th in the AP poll, one place to No. 16 in the USA Today Coaches Poll and NU is No. 16 in the latest BCS rankings.
Michigan will also bring an 8-2 overall record and a 4-2 mark in Big Ten play into Saturday’s game, following a 31-14 victory at Illinois on Saturday. The Wolverines also need a victory on Saturday to keep their hopes of playing
in the inaugural Big Ten Championship Game alive. Michigan is ranked 20th in this week’s Associated Press poll, 18th in the coaches poll and checks in at 18th in the BCS rankings.

Michigan is the winningest college football program of all-time with 892 victories, while Nebraska is in fourth at 845 wins. The game is also likely to feature the largest crowd ever to witness a Nebraska football game. The Huskers have played in front of just two crowds of more than 100,000 fans, with the crowd of 110,753 at Penn State in 2002 being the largest crowd for a Nebraska game in its 122-year history.
The Series
Saturday’s game will be the first regular-season meeting between the two schools since 1962, when NU won at Michigan 25-13 in Bob Devaney’s first season as head coach. The two most recent meetings have come in bowl games, with Michigan winning the 1986 Fiesta Bowl and NU capturing a 32-28 win in the 2005 Alamo Bowl.

The Coaches
Bo Pelini (Ohio State, ‘90) owns a 37-14 record in his fourth season. Pelini has guided NU to nine or more wins in each of his first three seasons as head coach, joining Bob Devaney, Tom Osborne and Frank Solich in accomplishing that feat. Pelini has guided Nebraska to a conference championship game the past two seasons and to at least a share of the Big 12 divisional crown his first three seasons as head coach.
Michigan: Brady Hoke (Ball State, ‘82) holds an 8-2 record in his first season at Michigan, and a 55-53 record in his ninth season overall as a college head coach. Hoke previously served as head coach at Ball State (2003-08) and San Diego State (2009-10) before taking over in Ann Arbor in January.
University Park, Pa. - Rex Burkhead pounded out his sixth 100-yard rushing game of the season on Saturday with 121 yards on 25 carries and one touchdown in a 17-14 win over the No. 12 Penn State Nittany Lions at Beaver Stadium.
Taylor Martinez added 56 yards on the ground on 19 carries and was mistake free through the air with 143 yards on 13-26 passing. Kelly Bell led NU’s receivers with four catches for 42 yards, while Kyler Reed added three catches for 40 yards.
The  victory over Penn State marked the highest ranked team Nebraska has defeated away from home since a victory over sixth-ranked Tennessee in the 2000 Fiesta Bowl and the highest ranked team Nebraska has defeated on its home field since a 27-14 win at second-ranked Washington in 1997.
Playing in front of 107,903 fans, the second-largest crowd ever for a Nebraska football game, and an ESPN national television audience, the Blackshirts got stops on Penn State's final two offensive drives to secure the win.
After Penn State cut the Husker lead to 17-14, Nebraska went 3-and-out, giving the ball back to PSU on their own 11-yard line following a 61-yard punt from Brett Maher. The Nittany Lions were moving the ball well, until they were stopped for no gain on two straight plays at their own 37. After being stopped on 3rd-and-1, PSU took a timeout, but it did them no good as Lavonte David posted the biggest of his nine tackles on the day with a stuff of Silas Redd to deny PSU a first down.
Nebraska would get the ball back with 1:49 on the clock and a chance to end the game.
The Huskers would force Penn State to use the rest of its timeouts, but a fourth-down stop on a run by Burkhead on 4th-and-2 from the 29 gave Penn State the ball back with a chance to win the game.
Following an incomplete pass on first down, the Husker secondary was flagged for defensive holding, giving PSU 1st-and-10 at the their own 37. Matt McGloin would complete just one more pass for nine yards and would get no closer as an incomplete pass to Justin Brown ended the Nittany Lions comeback attempt on Senior Day.
The Huskers’ eventual game-winning score came off a 14-yard option run from Martinez to Burkhead in the third quarter following the first turnover of the game.
After the Huskers opened the second half with a punt, Penn State took over on its own 30 and had crossed into Nebraska territory with 1st-and-10 on the NU 41. The drive ended on the next play when Cameron Meredith forced a fumble on a seven-yard sack of McGloin that was recovered by Eric Martin.
The Husker offense would follow with eight straight running play on the legs of Martinez and Burkhead that would cover 52 yards, including 31 yards on the final two plays of the drive.
At the time it looked as if the Huskers have started to put the game away with a 17-0 lead, but Penn State would answer with 14 unanswered points.
Following the Burkhead touchdown, Penn State responded with a nine-play drive that covered 82 yards in 3:36. The biggest play of the drive came on a 40-yard pass from McGloion to Derek Moye to the NU 5. Stephfon Green would scamper into the endzone two plays later from five yards out.
After each team punted twice, Nebraska was just about to cross into Penn State territory when a botched handoff from Burkhead to Tyler Legate on 2nd-and-2 was recovered by Penn State’s Jordan Hill.
The Nittany Lions would march 51 yards in nine plays to cut the NU lead to 17-14, capped by a six-yard run from Green. During the drive, Penn State went deep into the play book with a reverse pass back to the quarterback. Curtis Drake completed a 16-yard pass to McGloin down to the NU six-yard line, which was followed on the next play with Green's score.
The Nittany Lions had the first scoring opportunity of the game on a 47-yard field goal attempt midway through the first quarter. The Huskers had kept PSU on its half to the field until quarterback McGloin got a lucky bounce on a 3rd-and-7 pass from his own 33-yard line.
McGloin's pass was nearly intercepted by Nebraska's Ciante Evans, but the tipped ball instead landed in hands of Drake for 31 yards to the Nebraska 36. Four plays later Anthony Fera would come on for the field goal attempt and miss wide right.
After just two first downs in the first quarter, the Huskers started to find a rhythm on their opening drive of the second quarter after forcing a PSU punt.
Starting on their own 27, Martinez and the Huskers picked up four first downs on the drive, including three of the four on three consecutive plays. The drive would stall following a three-yard rush from Martinez on 3rd-and-11 from the 23-yard line, but Maher would convert on a 41-yard field goal to give NU the early 3-0 lead.
The Huskers would extend their lead to 10-0 as the first half was winding down after coving 80 yards in 12 plays, capped by a two-yard touchdown run by Ameer Abdullah.
After forcing Penn State to punt for the fifth time in the first half, the Huskers took over on their own 20-yard line with 3:33 on the clock. NU would start with four straight rushing plays before Martinez hit Reed for 24 yards down the sideline to setup 1st-and-10 at the PSU 44. Martinez was 3-4 on the drive for 49 yards, with all three completions to different receivers.
Penn State had an opportunity to hold Nebraska to a field goal attempt with the Huskers facing 3rd-and-9 on the 14, but Nittany Lion safety Nick Sukay was flagged for pass interference on a throw from Martinez to Tim Marlowe. NU would score on the following play as Burkhead would go under center and toss the ball to Abdullah for the two-yard plunge.
Nebraska returns to road action next week when the Huskers travel to Ann Arbor to take on Michigan. Kickoff time between the Huskers and Wolverines is set for 9 a.m. (Pacific) on ESPN/ESPN2.
Scoring Summary
Final: #19 Nebraska 17, #12 Penn State 14
Saturday, Nov. 12, 2011
Beaver Stadium (University Park)
First Quarter (Tied, 0-0)
Second Quarter (NEB, 10-0)
NEB - 10:55 - Brett Maher 41 FG - 9 plays, 50 yards, 5:53, NEB 3-0
NEB - 0:44 - Ameer Abdullah 2 run (Maher kick) - 12 plays, 80 yards, 2:49 NEB 10-0
Third Quarter Quarter (NEB, 17-7)NEB - 8:51 - Rex Burkhead 14 run (Maher kick) - 8 plays, 52 yards, 2:54, NEB 17-0
PSU - 5:07 - Stephfon Green 5 run (Fera kick) - 9 plays, 82 yards, 3:36, NEB 17-7
Fourth Quarter (NEB, 17-14)PSU- 5:42 - Stephfon Green 6 run (Fera kick) - 9 plays, 51 yards, 3:53, NEB 17-14

 #19 Nebraska 17, #12 Penn State 14
Attendance: 107,903
Time of Game: 3:27
Game Start: 11:03 a.m. (central)

"There's always something going on in life," Brown said. "I gave my guys an example today of a snowflake. You can look at a snowstorm and just see the snow coming down, see it all, that's not much focus. Try to follow a flake all the way to the ground. That's focus. If your scope is small enough, you'll have great focus. This game, what we're going to do in those three hours at this football game is our focus right now. That should be an easy assignment. It's a matter of what becomes most important to them, and what's important to our football players right now is not what's going on at Penn State outside of that football game on Saturday."
Lincoln-The Nebraska Cornhuskers continued preparations on Wednesday for this weekend's matchup with the Michigan Wolverines. The Huskers took to the Hawks Championship Center and the Ed and Joyanne Gass Practice Field for just over two hours in half pads.
After practice, Assistant Offensive Line Coach John Garrison spoke about how the team is overcoming injuries and mental fatigue.
"Everybody at this time of the year, at this juncture of the season is hurting," Garrison said. "You just have to press through it."
Garrison also discussed what Michigan defensive lineman Mike Martin brings to the table for the Wolverines.
"Very physical player," Garrison said. "Probably by far my favorite d-lineman that I've seen, just as far as his hands and how he plays the game. That entire group up front plays really well with their hands. They're going to get hands on you and be able to move and get separation."
With Nebraska facing yet another strong defensive front this week, Garrison commented on the physicality of the Big Ten defensive lines NU  has faced this season.
"There's some big guys out there," Garrison said. "I feel small compared to them. It's a week-in and week-out type of deal. We're always going to see a good front seven in the Big Ten, but we wouldn't want it any other way."
Walk-ons such as Spencer Long have made major contributions to the offensive line this season. Garrison praised the toughness and work ethic the sophomore brings to the left guard position.
"He's just a tough, hard-nosed guy," Garrison said. "From the time I had him on the scout defensive line, he came to work every day. He wanted to improve himself, he wanted to be a better scout player and that carried over to eventually becoming an offensive lineman for us. His attitude, his work ethic is second to none, and he's all about improving himself every day."

Lincoln - Nebraska place-kicker/punter Brett Maher picked up his third Big Ten weekly honor on Monday, as he was named Co-Special Teams Player of the Week along with Purdue's Kawann Short. Overall, it is the fourth time this season the Huskers have earned the special teams award. Freshman Ameer Abdullah was selected following NU’s 42-29 win over Fresno State after he totaled 231 all-purpose yards, including a 100-yard return for a touchdown.
Maher was a difference maker in the field position battle once again for the Huskers in their 17-14 win over No. 12 Penn State on Saturday at Beaver Stadium. The junior averaged 45.0 yards per punt on eight tries, while placing five punts inside the Nittany Lions' 20-yard line. Maher had two punts of 50 yards or more, including a 61-yard bomb that pinned PSU on its own 11-yard line in the final five minutes of the game. One of 20 semifinalist for the Lou Groza Award, Maher now ranks seventh nationally in punting with an average of 45.37 yards per punt.
The Kearney, Neb., native also converted his only field goal attempt of the afternoon on Saturday with a 41-yard try. Maher is 16-19 on the year, which ties him for ninth nationally with a .842 field goal percentage, while all three of his misses have come on attempts of 50 yards or more. Maher and teammate Rex Burkhead each rank in the top 30 nationally in scoring with Burkhead tied for 13th (9.60 ppg.) and Maher ranking 26th (8.60 ppg.)
Maher's other two weekly award came after a pair of wins over Tennessee at Chattanooga (Sept. 5) and Ohio State (Oct. 10).

Nebraska junior running back Rex Burkhead has been named one of 10 semifinalists for the 2011 Doak Walker Award, given annually to the nation's top running back. The announcement was made Friday morning by the SMU Athletic Forum Board of Directors.
Burkhead is one of two Big Ten running backs on the list, joining Wisconsin junior Montee Ball. The other semifinalists include San Diego State sophomore Ronnie Hillman, Oregon junior LaMichael James, Missouri sophomore Henry Josey, SMU junior Zach Line, Washington junior Chris Polk, Oklahoma State sophomore Joseph Randle, Alabama junior Trent Richardson and Virginia Tech junior David Wilson.
Burkhead enters Saturday's game at Penn State with 951 rushing yards and 13 rushing touchdowns. He has posted five 100-yard rushing games in 2011, and is just 49 yards from posting the 31st, 1,000-yard rushing season in school history. Burkhead has moved into the top 20 on the Nebraska career rushing list heading into the home stretch of the season.
A Plano, Texas native, Burkhead is also accomplished in the classroom, carrying a 3.38 grade-point average in history. On Thursday, he was one of five Nebraska players named to the CoSIDA Academic All-District VII team, and is now on the national ballot for Academic All-America honors.
Burkhead is the first Nebraska player to be a Doak Walker Award semifinalist since Dan Alexander in 2000.
The three finalists for the Doak Walker Award will be announced on Monday, Nov. 21.

A nation-leading five Huskers were named to the academic all-district 7 football team, the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA) announced on Thursday. Each of the five honorees advance to the national ballot, where they will be eligible for Capital One/CoSIDA Academic All-America honors.
Senior Austin Cassidy, juniors Ben Cotton, Rex Burkhead and Sean Fisher and sophomore Spencer Long each earned a spot on the team. Huskers accounted for more than one quarter of the 24-player team, as no other school in the district had more than two honorees. The Huskers' five selections marked their highest total since nabbing six selections in 2004.
Nebraska not only led Division I with five honorees, but the Huskers were one of only five schools nationally with as many as four student-athletes named to an all-district team. Three of those five schools came from the Big Ten Conference, as Michigan State and Northwestern each produced four academic all-district selections.
Highlighting Nebraska's selections were Cassidy and Fisher. Cassidy made the squad for the second straight season, as last year he earned first-team academic All-America honors. Fisher was one of only three players to make the all-district 7 team with a perfect 4.0 grade-point average. Fisher, Cotton, Burkhead and Long were each academic all-district selections for the first time in their careers. Cotton was the lone tight end chosen in district 7, while Burkhead was one of two running backs honored. Fisher was among three linebackers, Cassidy was one of four defensive backs and Long was one of five offensive linemen.
With five players advancing to the national academic All-America ballot, including one repeat selection, Nebraska has an excellent chance to add to its nation-leading total. The Huskers have produced a total of 103 academic All-Americans all-time, including 99 CoSIDA Academic All-Americans. Nebraska's football program has produced more CoSIDA Academic All-Americans than any other program in the country, while Nebraska leads all institutions in the nation with 291 selections across all sports.

The inaugural Big Ten Football Championship Game will begin at 5:17 p.m. PST on December 3, 2011, and will be held at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis. The champion of the Legends Division will meet the champion of the Leaders Division, with the winner earning the Big Ten Championship and a chance to play in either the Rose Bowl Game or Bowl Championship Series National Championship Game. FOX Sports will serve as the official broadcast partner of the Big Ten Football Championship Games from 2011-16 and Lucas Oil Stadium will host the title games from 2011-15.
The NCAA recently named inaugural recipients of the 1A FAR Academic Excellence Awards and 10 Nebraska graduates were among the more than 400 Division I Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) student-athletes to receive the honor.

The award was established by the 1A Faculty Athletics Representatives to recognize student-athlete academic achievement. Nebraska's faculty athletic representative is Josephine Potuto, who has served Nebraska in that role since 1997, in addition to serving as the Richard H. Larson Professor of Constitutional Law.

Among 120 FBS schools, Nebraska was one of just seven programs with 10 or more recipients of the honor. Recipients must have graduated in the past academic year with at least a 3.80 cumulative grade-point average and have participated in at least two years of intercollegiate athletics at an FBS institution in a sport sponsored by an FBS conference.

Nebraska senior safety Austin Cassidy represented the football team on the honoree list. Cassidy earned his degree in psychology last May, completing his undergraduate studies with a 3.938 cumulative grade-point average. Cassidy was a first-team Academic All-American in 2010.

Nebraska was also represented by four members of the track and field program-Kayla Ubel and Cami Jiskra on the women's side and Aaron Brandt and Eric Lund from the men's team. The women's swimming and diving program had a pair of honorees in Kaitlin Arntz and Sarah Ziegelmann. Women's soccer (Jessica Mills), softball (Robin Macken) and wrestling (Tucker Lane) also had student-athletes honored.

The award was given to 432 student-athletes nationally: 136 men and 296 women. Twenty-eight percent of the recipients majored in mathematics, science or engineering; 22 percent in business-related fields; 18 percent in social sciences or humanities; 12 percent in health-related studies; 7 percent in education; 6 percent in communications; and the remaining 7 percent in other fields.

Nebraska's Honorees
Name (last, first)
Women's Swimming and Diving
Arntz, Kaitlin
Cassidy, Austin
Women's Soccer
Mills, Jessica
Biological Systems Engineering
Mackin, Robin
Women's Swimming and Diving
Ziegelmann, Sarah
Men's Track and Field
Brandt, Aaron
Nutrition and Health Sciences
Men's Track and Field
Lund, Eric
Women's Track and Field
Ubel, Kayla
Lane, Tucker
Communication Studies
Women's Track and Field
Jiskra, Cami
Criminology and Criminal Justice

Lincoln - Head Coach Darin Erstad announced on Tuesday morning that five junior college players and one high school senior have signed their National-Letters-of-Intent to play baseball at Nebraska. The class is Erstad's first as a head coach and includes three players with ties to the state of Nebraska, as well as one each from Montana, Texas and North Dakota.
"We are very excited about the class we have assembled," Erstad said. "Every student-athlete will excel not only on the field but in the classroom as well. Each of them bring a blue collar mentality which is the backbone of Nebraska Baseball. We expect every student-athlete to come in and contribute right away."
Justin Black (Billings, Mont. - Billings West HS)
Christian DeLeon (Richmond, Texas - North Central Texas College/Blinn CC)
Michael Hoppes (Scottsbluff, Neb. - Iowa Western CC)
Tanner Lubach (Lincoln, Neb. - Hutchinson CC)
Matt Strahm (West Fargo, N.D. - Neosho CC)
Corey Stringer (Omaha, Neb. - Fort Scott CC)
The No. 4 Nebraska volleyball team will host the Wisconsin Badgers on Saturday, Nov. 19 at the NU Coliseum at 7 p.m. Central. The match will air live on NET and
The Huskers (22-3, 15-2) topped No. 19 Minnesota 3-1  (17-25, 25-17, 25-15, 25-16) on Wednesday night.
Wisconsin and Nebraska have met 14 times, with NU holding a 12-1-1 record over the Badgers. The last time the two teams met was on Oct. 14 when Nebraska swept Wisconsin 3-0 (25-21, 25-15, 25-21).
Fans will be able to see the match live on NET with Larry Punteney calling the action and Kathi Wieskamp adding analysis. It can also be viewed on with a subscription.
Fans can listen to all of the action with John Baylor and Diane Mendenhall on the 25-station Husker Sports Network, including B107.3 FM in Lincoln and Twister 93.3 FM in Omaha. Fans outside the state will also be able to catch the live audio feed for free on
In addition, the Nebraska volleyball program will join the annual U.S. Marines Toys for Tots Drive on Saturday.
Lincoln, Neb.-The No. 4 Nebraska volleyball team used a balanced and gritty effort Wednesday night to overcome the No. 19 Minnesota Gophers 3-1 (17-25, 25-18, 25-15, 25-16) in front of 4,166 fans at the NU Coliseum. The Huskers saw three players tally double-digit kills on the night.
Gina Mancuso, Morgan Broekhuis and Hannah Werth all notched 14 kills against the Gophers, guiding NU to 60 total kills as a team. Mancuso and Werth had 16 and 17 digs, respectively, giving Mancuso her 11th double-double of the season and Werth her eighth. Lauren Cook had 47 assists and 12 digs on the night for her 14th double-double of the year.

Brooke Delano tallied nine kills on 23 attacks for a hitting percentage of .348, while adding eight blocks. Jordan Wilberger came off the bench for six kills on 12 attacks and also had five blocks on the night. Lara Dykstra helped NU defensively with 14 digs.
The Huskers notched a .275 hitting percentage for the match, while Minnesota hit .168. Nebraska out-blocked the Gophers 13-6 and out-dug Minnesota 71-62.
West Lafayette, Ind. - The No. 2 Nebraska volleyball team (21-3, 14-2) fell 3-0 to the No. 10 Purdue Boilermakers (25-19, 25-19, 25-16) Saturday night in front of an electric standing room-only crowd at Holloway Gymnasium.
Hannah Werth led Nebraska on the night with 11 kills, while Gina Mancuso, Brooke Delano and Hayley Thramer all had seven kills. Lauren Cook notched 35 assists, but NU hit just .173 for the match. The Huskers had 43 digs behind Lara Dykstra's 13. Purdue hit .410 for the match and had 57 team digs. The Boilermakers also out-blocked Nebraska 9-1.
Bloomington, Ind.- The No. 2 Nebraska Volleyball team (21-2, 14-1) swept the Indiana Hoosiers (25-19, 25-19, 25-20) at University Gym Friday night.  
Morgan Broekhuis notched 12 kills on the night with a hitting percentage of .407. Gina Mancuso tallied 11 kills, while Hannah Werth had eight for the Huskers. Brooke Delano tabbed seven kills and zero errors for NU. Nebraska was guided offensively by Lauren Cook, who had 40 assists on the night. Lara Dykstra paced NU defensively with 13 digs.
Nebraska hit .321 for the match, while Indiana hit .217. The Huskers out-blocked IU 6-3.5.
Lincoln, Neb.- Nebraska outside hitter Gina Mancuso was honored as an academic Second-Team District Seven selection by the College Sports Information Directors of America on Thursday.
The junior from Omaha, Neb., is a business administration major at Nebraska and earned first-team Academic All-Big 12 honors in 2010.
Mancuso is also a leader on the court for NU, as she leads the team in kills and attacks in 2011.

Lincoln - Nebraska Head Volleyball Coach John Cook announced Thursday morning the addition of three high school standouts to the Huskers' 2012 roster.

The class includes outside hitter Kelsey Fien (Bakersfield, Calif.), setter/opposite side hitter Alexa Strange (San Clemente, Calif.) and setter Lauren Sieckmann (Omaha, Neb.). All three players rank in's top-100 Senior Aces.
Hometown (School)
Kelsey Fien
Bakersfield, Calif. (Frontier)
Alexa Strange
San Clemente, Calif. (San Clemente)
Lauren Sieckmann
Omaha, Neb. (Marian, Elkhorn South)

Kelsey Fien | 6-3, OH/RS (Bakersfield, Calif. - Frontier HS)Named the No. 19 player in the country by and among the top five volleyball recruits in California, Fien has led her high school and club team with her natural athletic ability. She was also nominated for the Under Armour All-America team and Gatorade Player of the Year in California.
Fien has led Frontier High School to a 25-11 record heading into the state championships at the end of the month. So far in 2011 she has totaled 414 kills on 948 attacks, while notching 397 digs. She is also the first player in her high school's history to record 1,000 kills.
As a junior, Fien was named to's Top-50 Junior list after producing 446 kills, 46 blocks and 289 digs.
Kelsey is the daughter of John and Lynn Fien and has a sister, Jennifer, and two brothers, Bradley and Garrett. She was recruited by top programs across the country, but chose Nebraska over UCLA, Hawaii, Oregon, Oregon State and California.
"Kelsey is a taller, more physical left side hitter that we believe will fit in great in the Big Ten Conference," Cook said. "She will provide us with much added depth at the left-side hitter position. One of the attractions to Nebraska for Kelsey is that she lives in a rural area in California and is very involved in 4-H and similar activities. We're hoping she will come in as a freshman and be able to contribute for us. Kelsey fits the mold of a Nebraska player, she is still developing and still growing into her body.  She comes from an agricultural background and almost feels like she is a transplanted Nebraskan in California."
Lincoln - Seven talented high school players signed National Letters of Intent to play softball at Nebraska next season, Head Coach Rhonda Revelle announced on Friday.
The incoming class of recruits fills a variety of needs for the Huskers, as the signees include one catcher, one outfielder, two pitchers and three infielders. Included in the talented class are two state players of the year (Nebraska and Oregon), one two-time high school All-American and one U.S. Junior National Team tryout invitee.
The class includes one in-state player, one Arizona native, one Kansas native, one Oregon native and three California natives. One recruit has already completed her high school softball career, while the other six will end their careers this spring.
The incoming players will have big shoes to fill, as Nebraska loses six seniors to graduation, including two of its three pitchers, three returning starters, three all-conference performers, two all-region selections and two CoSIDA Academic All-Americans.
The class will be expected to contribute immediately and that's something the group is more than capable of doing, according to Revelle.
"The 2012 class is an offensively explosive group with power, speed and the ability hit for average. They all have storied histories of their offensive prowess. In addition to the offensive punch they have, they also handle the leather well behind the plate, on the dirt and in the grass. 
"Pitching also highlights this class, as the Huskers are bringing in two pitchers in the same class for the first time in the last several years. Both pitchers are battle-tested and have had success against many of the nation's elite club programs. 
"This is an outstanding group of student-athletes whom we are confident will wear the scarlet and cream with dignity, pride and class."
2011 Nebraska Softball Signing ClassAlicia Armstrong, INF/OF, Beatrice, Neb., Beatrice HS/Nebraska Gold
Danica Bishop, RHP, Irvine, Calif., Woodland HS/Firecrackers-Snyder
Hailey Decker,  INF, Keizer, Ore., McNary HS/Northwest Bullets
Emily Lockman, RHP, Corona, Calif., Norco HS/Corona Angels
Sammi Noland, C/INF, Tucson, Ariz., Canyon del Oro HS/AZ Desert Thunder
Kiki Stokes, OF, Olathe, Kan., Olathe East HS/DeMarini Zephyrs
Dawna Tyson, INF, Corona, Calif., Corona HS/Corona Angels
A good article by sportswriter Tom Shatel.... 


Penn State football fans and followers aren't the only ones that appreciate the role Nebraska played last Saturday in leading the pregame prayer for both teams and embracing the mutual respect both programs showed each other, on and off the field. Athletic department staff members from Penn State also expressed their appreciation for Nebraska's overall support. "The Nebraska folks who were here were all first-class and handled our difficult circumstances well," Matt Stolberg wrote in an email to Nebraska's Compliance Department Monday. "Please let everyone know that your institution and team were complimented over and over again in our staff meeting this morning." Stolberg is Director of Compliance at Penn State. 
Richard Owen, who lives in Somers, N.Y., attended last Saturday's game in State College with his wife, a Penn State alum, and two sons. "We were fortunate to have seats three rows back from the Husker bench," Owen said. "We felt like we were on the field. My wife wore a neutral color and my sons and I wore red. I was a little nervous about the colors, having heard Tom Osborne's expression of concern, but we just couldn't see any other way to arrive at Beaver Stadium except in red. 
"From the moment we got on the bus, we felt comfortable. It was a joy to see so many Nebraska fans proudly proclaiming their affiliation. Equally important, our display seemed to invite Penn State folks to approach us. Every single encounter we had was welcoming, friendly, and courteous. By the end of the day, I found myself telling people that the highest compliment I can pay the fans of Penn State is that you remind me of Nebraska fans, and we consider Nebraska fans the best in the world.
"Being in Beaver Stadium on November 12, 2011, was an unforgettable experience, especially the gathering of both teams at the center of the field for prayer," Owen said. "The 108,000 fans, both in blue and in red, behaved in an honorable and respectful way. Both teams played hard and played fair. I told my sons that they will never forget this day, just as I have never forgotten being in Memorial Stadium on November 23, 1963, the day after the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. I believe the 2011 NU-Penn State game deserves to be etched as deeply into our psyche as that sad day almost 50 years ago."
To find a link to the Coach Ron Brown’s post-game interview, and to see the comments and replies to Randy’s article go to:

Description: Description: Tokyo Huskers
Members of the Tokyo Huskers cheered for the Nebraska football team against Ohio State from half a world away. The NAA’s chapter in Japan hosted 26 UNL alumni and friends at its first Husker watch party.
Follow the Huskers to a Bowl Game
With new Big Ten Conference bowl affiliations, the Nebraska football team will likely travel to a bowl game Husker fans haven't seen in quite some time. The Nebraska Alumni Association is already hard at work finalizing official ticket and travel packages to every potential destination, from Pasadena to Tampa Bay. Trips typically include lodging at premier or team hotels, game tickets, pre-game events and pep rallies, exclusive souvenirs, former player hosts and more, and are available with or without charter air transportation.  Pre-registration for a variety of potential packages, without deposit, will be available Monday, Nov. 21, at 1 p.m. (Central) by calling 888-353-1874 (ask for Sarah Haskell). Check for more details as they become available for the only Official Tours of the Nebraska Alumni Association and Nebraska Athletics.

Alumni Spotlight: Grow's Invention Illuminates Stars
Description: Description: GrowUNL alum Alan Grow recently hitchhiked halfway across the country for a reunion of Jeffrey S. Raikes School of Computer Science and Management alumni. His travels were a way to decompress after hitting it big in Hollywood with the start-up company he co-founded, iLuminate, billed as the first wearable, wireless lighting system. The technology is creating buzz in the entertainment biz – stars like Christina Aguilera and the Black Eyed Peas have used iLuminate’s technology in their performances. A 2003 UNL graduate, Grow was a member of the Raikes School’s first entering class, when the curriculum was still coming together and the Kauffman Center, he says, was “just a hole in the ground.” To read more about Grow’s journey, as well as the evolution of the Raikes School, click here.

BTN Program Benefits Scholarships
Description: Description: BTN LogoAlumni and fans can access online coverage of Husker sports and the Big Ten while supporting the Nebraska Alumni Association. If you sign up for the Big Ten Digital Network, 20 percent of your purchase will go to the Nebraska Alumni Association scholarship fund.  Between today and February 2012, more than 20 Nebraska events will be streamed live at, including men’s and women’s basketball and wrestling. In the spring, Husker baseball, softball and other Olympic sports will be featured. also offers exclusive behind-the-scenes video, game highlights, press conferences and more. For a complete listing of live events, please visit the Big Ten Digital Network website and click on the LIVE EVENTS tab.  To purchase, click on SUBSCRIBE. Make sure to include the Nebraska Alumni Association code (NEBRALUM222) in the coupon text box.

ROTC Alumni Honored
Description: Description: ROTC 2011More than 80 UNL ROTC alumni returned to campus in November for their second annual reunion.  The UNL program is the only ROTC program in the country that has five active-duty United States Navy Rear Admirals, four of whom were honored at Memorial Stadium Nov. 5. To view photos from the reunion, click here. To view a message from Rear Admiral Mike Franken, from the Horn of Africa, click here.

Wanted: Centennial College Alumni
The Centennial (College) Education Program was a co-ed, interdisciplinary program from 1969–1981 that provided an alternative to departmentalized education. Program participants lived in a close, scholastic community housed in Love and Heppner halls. The students participated in seminar-style classes with an emphasis on self-directed study. If you were a member of Centennial College, you are invited to reconnect with your classmates. Please take this brief survey so we may gauge interest in activities for Centennial College alumni.

Alumni Quick Hits
  • The NAA is excited to welcome three new alumni groups: Central Illinois Huskers (Champaign, Ill.), Michigan Huskers and the Innocents Society Alumni affiliate group. To learn more about these groups, or to find a chapter near you, visit our website.
  • Planning a holiday party for your company or group? Consider the Wick Alumni Center or the Nebraska Champions Club. Contact Carrie Myers at 888-353-1874, or click here to read more about the venues.
  • Cather Circle, the NAA’s women’s mentoring and networking organization, has scheduled its spring meeting for March 8-9, 2012, at the Wick Alumni Center in Lincoln. Please direct any questions to Sarah Haskell. To learn more about Cather Circle, click here.
UNL No. 9 in Fitness Rankings
Description: Description: UNL Recreation CenterMen's Fitness magazine has ranked the University of Nebraska–Lincoln as No. 9 on its latest list of 25 Fittest Colleges in America. UNL is joined on the list by seven fellow Big Ten institutions. About UNL, Men's Fitness wrote: "The world knows the University of Nebraska as the home of the Huskers, one of the most storied programs in the history of college football. But life on the university's Lincoln campus doesn't just revolve around game day. The faculty and coaches preach a philosophy of total health and wellness, and at Nebraska, that means balance. To read more, click here.

Carson Foundation donates $1 million
Description: Description: Johnny CarsonThe John W. Carson Foundation announced a $1 million gift to the University of Nebraska Foundation to create the Johnny Carson Opportunity Scholarship Fund. The permanently endowed scholarship fund will annually benefit students in the Hixson-Lied College of Fine and Performing Arts who are graduates of high schools in Nebraska, with preference for students in the Johnny Carson School of Theatre and Film. With this recent gift, Carson’s support for the University of Nebraska totals more than $12 million. To read more about Carson’s support for UNL, click here.

Get a Teaching Certificate, Master's Degree in 14 Months
Description: Description: UNL NDo you love science, and want to share your knowledge with the next generation?  In just 14 months you can be certified to teach and earn a master’s degree through UNL’s Department of Teaching, Learning and Teacher Education. Generous fellowships through the Robert Noyce Teacher Scholarship program are available. A few reminders about due dates: the essay for the Noyce Teacher Scholarship is due on Feb. 1, 2012, with the application for the program. If you decide not to apply for the scholarship then the complete application is due on March 1, 2012. For application information, click here

Big Red Prepares for Big House
Description: Description: Bo PeliniNo. 17 Nebraska will play its second straight road game against a top-20 foe when the Huskers face No. 20 Michigan on Saturday. The Huskers (8-2, 4-2 Big Ten) meet the Wolverines (8-2, 4-2 Big Ten) in a key game in the Big Ten Legends Division. The two historic programs are just one game behind division leader Michigan State in the standings. Saturday's game in Ann Arbor will likely challenge the Huskers with the largest crowd to ever witness a Nebraska football game in person. To read what head coach Bo Pelini and Husker players had to say about the game, click here. A game preview is also available on

Huskers Rank High in Academics
Description: Description: GraduationFive Nebraska teams ranked at the top of the Big Ten Conference in the Graduation Success Rate (GSR) report released by the NCAA. Five of Nebraska's 11 women's sports achieved GSR scores of 100 percent—basketball, golf, softball, tennis and volleyball. Those teams all led or tied for the lead in the Big Ten in GSR scores. On the men's side, six teams scored at a 67 percent or better GSR score, including football, basketball, golf, cross country/track, gymnastics and tennis. To read more about the GSR rankings, click here.

Maher Earns Third Big Ten Award
Nebraska place-kicker/punter Brett Maher was named the Big Ten’s Co-Special Teams Player of the Week for his performance in the Huskers’ 17-14 win over Penn State Nov. 12. The junior averaged 45.0 yards per punt on eight tries, while placing five punts inside the Nittany Lions' 20-yard line. Maher had two punts of 50 yards or more, including a 61-yard bomb that pinned PSU on its own 11-yard line in the final five minutes of the game. Maher now ranks seventh nationally in punting with an average of 45.37 yards per punt. To read more about Maher, click here.

Campaign for Nebraska. Unlimited Possibilities
The University of Nebraska Foundation is involved in a campaign to raise $1.2 billion to fund university priorities such as student scholarships, faculty recruitment, research and program support. The campaign will conclude in 2014. To learn more about the Campaign for Nebraska, or to contribute, go to
NU’s favorite son comedian makes another serious gift
Description: Description: Johnny Carson Video
Heeeeere’s ... Johnny!
And yet another generous gift for his alma mater.
On Friday at UNL’s Temple Building, where legendary comedian Johnny Carson once honed his skills, the University of Nebraska Foundation announced a $1 million gift from the John W. Carson Foundation.
The money will create the Johnny Carson Opportunity Scholarship fund in honor of Carson, who died in 2005. The scholarships will help students in the Hixson-Lied College of Fine and Performing Arts who – like Carson – graduated from high schools in Nebraska.
Carson grew up in Norfolk, Neb. After World War II, he enrolled at the University of Nebraska, graduating in 1949 with a bachelor of arts degree in radio and speech with a minor in physics.
Players give back to honor coach who taught them more than just the game
Description: Description: UNK Coach Jerry Heuser
Former UNK men’s basketball coach Jerry Heuser taught the game.
But that was just part of what he gave his players.
“He taught us about life and what to expect after basketball and college,” former guard Gregg Grubaugh says. “He was not all just basketball.
“He was a good man.”

Kris Brown had no doubt. The former Nebraska and NFL kicker had known Brett Maher for more than a decade — since Brown was a student teacher at Maher's Waverly elementary school. He kicked many summers with Maher, tutored and talked with him. "It made my workout times that much more enjoyable," Brown said. So Brown knew that Maher had a "quiet confidence" to fill the shoes of departed Alex Henery, the most accurate kicker in NCAA history. He knew it even after the Huskers signed freshman Mauro Bondi to a scholarship to compete with walk-on Maher for the place-kicking job

Researchers will look for ways to help astronauts better adjust to gravity when they return from a mission.

Has a major-college football team ever won its first six games in a season and then lost the next six? Illinois has put itself in the crosshairs of researchers by following a 6-0 start — and a rise to No. 16 in the Associated Press poll — with a dismal four-game slide. A fifth straight loss is expected Saturday when the Illini host No. 15 Wisconsin. That leaves the regular-season finale at Minnesota as the best chance to stop the skid

You can call it Elimination Saturday for Nebraska and Michigan. A setback would hardly ruin the football season for either the Huskers or Wolverines, both 8-2 overall and 4-2 in the Big Ten, but consider: Lose and all but forget about making the Big Ten championship game. Lose and forfeit any hopes of sneaking into the BCS bonanza as an at-large participant.

The injury list is long and the time between road games is short. But for Nebraska, linebacker Will Compton said Monday, it's more mental than physical as the Huskers go from visiting Penn State to preparing for a trip to Michigan. "This is where teams start to show themselves," Compton said. "Who comes out winning their games and the bowl games is the team that stays the process and keeps going after it every day, and we have to do that."

Ugly Big Ten football. On TV, maybe that's what Nebraska-Penn State looked like. From the floor of Beaver Stadium, pulsing with the spectrum of human emotion, it looked and felt just right. The hardened looks and weary smiles on the faces of NU players afterward confirmed it.

The Creighton men's soccer team got the best of Missouri State when it counted most as the Bluejays avenged its only regular-season conference, knocking off the Bears 1-0 to capture the Missouri Valley Conference tournament title in front of 2,243 at Morrison Stadium.

Visiting Husker fans help ease the pain of the hurting home team.

Bo Pelini wasn't sure this game should be played. The Nebraska coach talked to Athletic Director Tom Osborne early in the week about No. 12 Penn State canceling its Saturday contest with the No. 19 Huskers in the midst of the sex abuse scandal that led to coach Joe Paterno's firing. "Here I am telling my football team to ignore what's going on because we have a game to play — we have to focus on what we're doing — but my No. 1 job is to educate and to talk to them about it," he said after Nebraska's 17-14 win Saturday afternoon.

Papillion-La Vista South capped its season in the only possible way — with another dominating victory. The 37-0 Titans, ranked No. 1 nationally by two websites, secured their second straight Class A title with a 25-15, 25-11, 25-17 sweep of Omaha Burke at the Heartland Events Center. Papio South stretched its two-season winning streak to 78, denying the Bulldogs their first volleyball championship.

The 86-year-old Catholic priest survived Iwo Jima in WW2 and went on to serve 30 years as a chaplain at the VA Medical Center in Omaha.

Omahans celebrate the Marines' birthday at the Nifty Bar.

Visit our Bay Area Huskers website for additional Husker information, Links, Upcoming Events, Past Events, Watch Sites, and the Schedule of Games. Also order Merchandise online, and get information on Husker Scholarships. Check out the History of the Huskers and meet our Directors. Say hello today, email us, sign up for our newsletter, and become a member of the Bay Area Huskers Alumni Chapter.

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