Saturday, November 26, 2011

Bay Area Huskers E-News 11/23/11

Hey Bay Area Husker Fans!
Happy Thanksgiving!  Hope you and yours have a wonderful holiday, and you get a chance to enjoy leftovers during the “Corn Bowl” (its actually called the Heroes Trophy) on Friday.  And watch out for that tryptophan laden turkey sandwich…you don’t want to miss the second half because you are napping ;o)

I don’t even want to discuss last Saturday’s game…time to move on and think about the last conference game of the season, and to the bowl game selections.  For those who like to dwell on the painful, I added the game synopsis below.

The Husker Volleyball team clinched their first ever Big Ten Conference title with a win over Iowa Tuesday…Congrats!!!  More info about the game that put them over the edge, and their last regular season match this Saturday versus Northwestern.

Note the info below (at the end of the email) about the Night of Legends event in Sacramento on Saturday February 25th with a familiar guest speaker, Dr. Tom Osborne.

Have a great Turkey Day!
Go Big Red (White and Blue),

Thanksgiving Thoughts:
"Enter His gates with thanksgiving, and His courts with praise. Give thanks to Him and praise His name. For the LORD is good and His love endures forever; His faithfulness continues through all generations." —Psalm 100:4-5

And if you are bored and looking for a little Thanksgiving history, check out this site:

Watch Parties:
Check first before you head out to watch the game at your favorite watch site.  Because the “Corn Bowl” game against Iowa will once again be on early (9:00 a.m. Pacific) on the day after Thanksgiving, some of our watch sites won’t be open for business yet.  I talked with Jack’s and they probably won’t be open that morning due to historically low attendance on that date in the past.  If the game were in the afternoon it might be a different story.  I know Legends in Concord will be open because it’s a popular date for golfers. 


Record: 8-3, 4-3
Rankings: Coaches-22; AP-22
Last Game:  lost to Michigan, 45-17
Coach: Bo Pelini
Career/NU Record: 38-15/4th year
vs. Iowa: 0-0
Record: 7-4, 4-3
Rankings: Coaches-NR; AP-NR
Last Game:  def. Purdue, 31-21
Coach: Kirk Ferentz
Career | Iowa Record: 108-85/16th year | 96-64/13th year
vs. NU: 0-2
The Matchup

Nebraska closes out the regular season in its traditional day after Thanksgiving matchup on Friday at Memorial Stadium in Lincoln. With the move to the Big Ten the opponent is different in 2011, as the Huskers will take on Iowa in the inaugural Heroes Game. Kickoff is set for 11 a.m. CST and the game will be televised nationally on ABC.

The matchup with Iowa will mark the 22nd consecutive season Nebraska has played on the day after Thanksgiving, including six years against Oklahoma from 1990 to 1995, and 15 meetings with Colorado during Nebraska’s run in the Big 12 Conference. Nebraska and Iowa are also scheduled to play on the day following Thanksgiving next year in Iowa City.

Nebraska enters the game with an 8-3 record, including a 4-3 record in the Big Ten Conference, following a 45-17 loss at Michigan on Saturday. The setback eliminated Nebraska from contention in the Legends Division, as Michigan State will be the division representative in the inaugural Big Ten title game on Dec. 3. The loss also dropped the Huskers to 22nd in both the AP and Coaches polls and 21st in the latest BCS rankings.

Iowa comes into the game with a 7-4 record, including a 4-3 Big Ten mark following a 31-21 victory at Purdue on Saturday. The Hawkeyes feature a high-octane offense, averaging nearly 390 yards per game, including 241.3 passing yards per contest.
The Series

Friday’s game is the first meeting between the schools as conference foes, but the 42nd all-time matchup. Nebraska holds a 26-12-3 advantage, including a 13-2-1 record against the Hawkeyes in Lincoln. This is the first meeting between the teams since Nebraska won both games in a home-and-home series with Iowa in 1999 and 2000.
The Coaches

Bo Pelini (Ohio State, ‘90) owns a 38-15 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.
Iowa: Kirk Ferentz (Connecticut, ‘78) is in his 13th season as the head coach at Iowa and owns a 96-64 record. He is 108-85 overall in his 16th season as a head coach. Ferentz has guided Iowa to nine bowl games, and a pair of Big Ten titles (2002, 2004). For his work, Ferentz has been named Big Ten Coach of the Year three times.
Nebraska Football

*-Nebraska is 845-348-40 all-time, one of just eight schools with 800 all-time victories
*-Nebraska has won five national championships (1970, 1971, 1994, 1995, 1997).
*-The Cornhuskers have won 43 conference championships.
*-Nebraska's 47 all-time bowl appearances rank fifth nationally.
*-Since 1970, Nebraska has 411 wins, 26 more than any other school.
*-Nebraska's 99 football Academic All-Americans leads the nation.
*-The Huskers have had 107 All-Americans in school history.
Scouting IowaIowa has won two of its last three games and enters Friday’s game with a 7-4 overall record and a 4-3 mark in Big Ten Conference play. The Hawkeyes have lost to three opponents Nebraska has defeated this season (Michigan State, Minnesota and Penn State), while beating two teams who defeated the Huskers (Michigan and Northwestern).

The Hawkeyes are led by a strong passing attack that ranks third in the Big Ten with 241.3 yards per game. Quarterback James Vandenberg is completing more than 60 percent of his passes and has thrown for 2,624 yards. He also boasts an impressive 23 touchdown passes to only five interceptions. On the ground, Marcus Coker is the Big Ten’s second-leading rusher with 1,297 yards this season, but the Hawkeyes’ next-leading rusher has only 79 yards on the year.

Defensively, Iowa is allowing 234.0 passing yards per game and 153.8 rushing yards. The Hawkeyes give up an average of 23.6 points per game.
Series HistoryThis week’s game marks the 42nd all-time meeting between Nebraska and Iowa, as the Huskers have played the Hawkeyes more than any other Big Ten team other than Minnesota.

The Huskers lead the all-time series with Iowa, 26-12-3. Nebraska owns a 13-2-1 series advantage in Lincoln, including a 10-1-0 edge inside Memorial Stadium. Iowa’s lone win at Memorial Stadium came in 1943.

Nebraska enters its game with Iowa ranked for the seventh straight meeting. In each of the previous six meetings from 1979 to 2000, the Huskers were ranked in the top 10. Overall, NU has been ranked nine times in the 42 all-time meetings including this year, while Iowa has never been ranked while facing the Huskers.

The Huskers have won three straight in the series dating back to 1982, scoring 42 points each time. In the most recent meeting, No. 1 Nebraska defeated Iowa, 42-13 in 2000. The previous year, the Huskers earned a 42-7 win in Iowa City in Kirk Ferentz’s first game as Iowa’s head coach. Before meeting six times from 1979 to 2000, the programs had not played each other since meeting seven straight seasons from 1940 to 1946.
Iowa Head Coach Kirk FerentzKirk Ferentz is in his 13th season at Iowa and his 16th season as a head coach overall. His tenure at Iowa is the second-longest in school history behind Hayden Fry. Ferentz is also the dean of active Big Ten coaches with his 13 seasons at Iowa, seven more than Ron Zook, who is in his seventh season at Illinois. Ferentz owns a 96-64 record at Iowa and a 108-85 career record.

A three-time Big Ten Coach of the Year, Ferentz has guided the Hawkeyes to four 10-win seasons, nine bowl berths, six bowl wins, five top-25 finishes and two Big Ten championships in his first 12 seasons. The Hawkeyes posted three straight 10-win seasons from 2002 to 2004, finishing with a No. 8 final ranking each year. In 2009, Ferentz led Iowa to its best start ever (9-0) before capping the year with an 11-2 record, a No. 7 national ranking and a victory over Georgia Tech in the Orange Bowl.

Ferentz’s other head coaching experience came at Maine from 1990 to 1992, when he compiled a 12-21 record. In between head coaching stints, Ferentz spent six seasons as an offensive line coach in the NFL for the Baltimore Ravens and Cleveland Browns from 1993 to 1998. His first full-time job in Division I came as Iowa’s offensive line coach from 1981 to 1989.

Ferentz is 0-2 in his head coaching career against Nebraska, suffering losses to the Huskers at home in 1999 and in Lincoln in 2000. The fifth-ranked Huskers’ 42-7 win over the Hawkeyes on Sept. 4, 1999, marked Ferentz’s first game as Iowa’s head coach.
Nebraska Head Coach Bo Pelini

Bo Pelini
is in his fourth season as Nebraska’s head coach and owns a 38-15 record with the Huskers. Pelini helped Nebraska to at least a share of the Big 12 North title in each of his first three seasons, becoming the first coach in the history of that league to win at least a share of a division title in each of his first three years.
Pelini took charge of the Huskers after a highly successful five-year run as a collegiate defensive coordinator, including orchestrating NU’s defensive efforts in 2003. Pelini picked up his first college head coaching victory as NU’s interim coach in the 2003 Alamo Bowl against Michigan State.
Following his one season at Nebraska, Pelini served as the co-defensive coordinator at Oklahoma in 2004, helping the Sooners to the Big 12 title and BCS title game. He then followed with three seasons as the defensive coordinator at LSU. With the Tigers, Pelini led three consecutive defenses to No. 3 national rankings in total defense. He culminated his time in Baton Rouge by helping the Tigers to the 2007 national championship.
In addition to his five seasons at the collegiate level, Pelini coached in the NFL for nine seasons, serving three years each with the San Francisco 49ers, New England Patriots and Green Bay Packers. Pelini was a team captain and four-year letterman as a safety at Ohio State from 1987 to 1990.
Pelini Stacks up Well with PeersIn guiding Nebraska to a 38-15 record, Pelini has put himself in some impressive company.
*-Pelini is the fourth Nebraska head coach to win nine games in each of his first three seasons with the Cornhuskers. The others to reach that win plateau were Bob Devaney, Tom Osborne and Frank Solich. Pelini has joined Solich as the only NU coaches with two 10-win seasons in their first three years.
*- Pelini, Solich and Texas' Mack Brown were the only coaches in Big 12 history (1996) to win nine or more games in each of their first three seasons.
*-Pelini's nine victories in 2008 tied for the most among 18 coaches in their first season at their respective schools. Among first-time head coaches, Pelini's victory total was the best in the nation. Pelini's 19 victories in his first two seasons were second among that group, and he has moved to the top of the 2008 hiring class with his 37 wins.
*-Pelini was just the eighth BCS conference (since 1998) first-time head coach to post nine or more victories in his first season. He was just the second first-year head coach in that span to win nine games after inheriting a team with a losing record the previous year. Only Pelini and Bill Stewart (former West Virginia coach) from the group won nine games each of the past three seasons.

Pelini Continues Defensive Accomplishments at Nebraska
At Nebraska, Pelini has continued his history of building championship defenses. Nebraska finished second in the Big 12 in total defense in 2008, a year after NU was 100th or worse in nearly every defensive category. In 2009, the Huskers led the nation in scoring defense and had the nation’s best scoring defensive improvement (18.1 ppg). Last season Nebraska again ranked among the nation’s best in several defensive categories.
With Pelini's previous track record, the success of his Nebraska defenses is no surprise.
*-Pelini led the 2003 Blackshirts to impressive numbers. NU had a school-record 47 takeaways, including a Big 12-record 32 interceptions, and finished second nationally in scoring defense, first in pass efficiency defense and 11th in total defense.
*-Pelini guided LSU defenses to No. 3 national finishes in total defense each of his three seasons in Baton Rouge.
*-In 119 games as a collegiate coach, Pelini's defenses have posted 10 shutouts, held the opposition to seven points or less 37 times and to 20 points or less 79 times.
*-Pelini-led defenses have 231 total takeaways, including two top-three national rankings.
Four Assistants in First Season on Husker StaffAfter having the same coaching staff for each of his first three seasons at Nebraska, Bo Pelini welcomed four new assistants in 2011. Rich Fisher (receivers), John Garrison (assistant offensive line/tight ends), Ross Els (linebackers) and Corey Raymond (secondary) are all in their first seasons as full-time members of the Husker coaching staff.
In addition to the new faces, Pelini shuffled some duties among returning coaches. Tim Beck takes over the role of offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach, while Ron Brown shifts to tutoring the Nebraska running backs.
Nebraska in Inaugural Season in Big Ten ConferenceNebraska officially became the 12th member of the Big Ten Conference on July 1, 2011. The Huskers are 4-3 in their first season of Big Ten Conference action. 
Nebraska has won football championships in four conferences during its 121 years of intercollegiate football, and also competed as an independent for several years. Overall, Nebraska has won 43 conference championships.
The major conferences for the Nebraska football program since the first season of play in 1890 include:
1890-1891: Independent
1892-1897: Western Inter-State Foot Ball Association
1898-1906, 1918-1920: Independent
1907-1917, 1921-1927: Missouri Valley Conference (12 conference titles)
1928-1947: Big Six Conference (9 conference titles)
1948-1959: Big Seven Conference
1960-1995: Big Eight Conference (20 conference titles)
1996-2010: Big 12 Conference (2 conference titles)
2011-: Big Ten Conference
Nebraska holds a 35-8 record against Big Ten opponents since 1970. Before the loss to Northwestern, the Huskers had won nine straight game in Lincoln against conference foes dating back to a 1981 loss to Penn State.
*-Among Big Ten Conference opponents, Nebraska has faced Minnesota the most, taking on the Gophers 51 times. Minnesota holds a 29-21-2 edge in the all-time series, but Nebraska has won the past 15 meetings dating back to 1963, including this year’s 41-14 win in Minneapolis.
*-Nebraska and Iowa have met 41 times in football, with the Huskers owning a 26-12-3 advantage. The two teams have met just six times since 1946, with NU winning five of those six meetings. Nebraska and Iowa will complete the regular season against each other through at least 2014, and will battle on the Friday after Thanksgiving in 2011 and 2012. Nebraska has played on the day after Thanksgiving every year since 1990, facing either Oklahoma or Colorado.
*-Aside from Minnesota and Iowa, Nebraska had faced the remaining six Big Ten foes on the 2011 schedule a total of 35 times entering the season, led by 13 meetings with Penn State.
Legends and Leaders
The Big Ten Conference is divided into two divisions for football competition–Legends and Leaders. Winners of the respective divisions will meet on Dec. 3 in Indianapolis for the Big Ten Championship.
Nebraska is in the Legends Division along with Iowa, Michigan, Michigan State, Minnesota and Northwestern. Nebraska will face each member of the Legends Division on an annual basis. The Leaders Division consists of Illinois, Indiana, Ohio State, Penn State, Purdue and Wisconsin. The Huskers will face Penn State every year in a protected cross-over game, while the other five opponents will rotate onto Nebraska’s schedule.
In 2011 and 2012, Nebraska will face Ohio State and Wisconsin from the Leaders Division. Nebraska will take on Illinois and Purdue in the 2013 and 2014 seasons, and does not face Indiana in the regular season in its first four years of Big Ten schedules.
The 2011 Schedule
Nebraska is facing arguably one of the nation’s most difficult schedules in 2011 and one of the most demanding slates in school history. As of Nov. 20, Nebraska’s schedule was ranked as the nation’s third-most difficult slate and toughest in the Big Ten. The opposition’s winning percentage is .624.

The 2011 schedule featured nine games against teams that participated in a bowl game in 2010. Included in that group are BCS bowl teams Ohio State (Sugar) and Wisconsin (Rose). Other teams that appeared in a bowl game include Fresno State (Humanitarian), Washington (Holiday), Michigan State (Capital One), Northwestern (Ticket City), Penn State (Outback), Michigan (Gator) and Iowa (Insight).

Wisconsin, Ohio State and Michigan State shared the Big Ten title in 2010, and each of those three schools won 11 regular-season games. Nebraska’s home schedule was arguably the most attractive in school history. In addition to the new flavor of Big Ten foes, six of the seven opponents coming to Memorial Stadium competed in a bowl game last fall.

Huskers, Hawkeyes Set for Heroes Game
The HyVee Heroes Game is the annual trophy game between Nebraska, the newest member of the Big Ten Conference, and Iowa, one of the conference’s original members. While both teams will aim to win the trophy on the field, both Nebraska and Iowa wished to make their annual meeting about more than just winning a football game. With that in mind, the schools partnered together to not only create a trophy, but to use a national stage to honor a citizen hero from each state.

In addition to the trophy that will be claimed by the winner of Friday’s game, both an Iowa and Nebraska native will be honored at halftime for extraordinary acts.

Ann Arbor, Mich. - A collection of special teams miscues by Nebraska allowed No. 20 Michigan to control the ball, the clock and the second half in the No. 17 Huskers' 45-17 loss to the Wolverines at Michigan Stadium on Saturday afternoon.
With the loss, Nebraska slipped to 8-3 overall and 4-3 in the Big Ten while dropping out of contention for the Legends Division title. Michigan improved to 9-2 overall and 5-2 in the Big Ten, while helping in-state rival Michigan State clinch the Legends Division crown with a victory at Indiana.
Although the Huskers surrendered 45 points on the scoreboard, the Blackshirts were handcuffed by special teams and offensive turnovers throughout the second half.
After Michigan jumped to a 10-0 first-quarter lead in front of 113,718 fans at the Big House, Nebraska responded. NU sophomore quarterback Taylor Martinez connected with senior wide receiver Brandon Kinnie on a 54-yard touchdown strike to cut the Wolverine margin to 10-7 at the end of the first quarter.
The Huskers tied the game at 10 early in the second quarter, thanks to the biggest defensive play of the game from senior defensive tackle Terrence Moore, who tipped a Denard Robinson pass into the air and then ran under it for an interception. Moore returned the ball to the Michigan 33. NU's offense was unable to move against a stingy Wolverine defense, but Brett Maher connected on a career-long 51-yard field goal to tie the game with 12:12 left in the half.
Michigan provided an answer of its own with a 12-play, 74-yard drive that consumed 6:07 on the clock and culminated with Robinson's 14-yard touchdown run with 6:05 left in the half.
The two teams went to the halftime locker room with the Wolverines up 17-10, but the Huskers were set to receive the second-half kickoff with a chance to even the score.
Nebraska's second-half special teams woes began immediately. Kenny Bell returned Matt Wile's kick 33 yards, but his fumble was recovered by Michigan's Courtney Avery. The Wolverines cashed in with a seven-play, 33-yard drive capped by Robinson's one-yard run to make it 24-10 with 11:31 left in the third quarter.
The Husker offense managed a first down on its first possession of the second half, but Michigan held on 3rd-and-6 to force a Maher punt. Maher mishandled a good snap, and had his first punt of the season blocked to set the Wolverines up with another short field at the 50.
Eight plays later, Fitzgerald Toussaint rumbled in from one yard out to give Michigan a 31-10 lead with 5:03 left in the third quarter.
The Wolverines forced another three-and-out, and Maher tried to make up for his mistake by booming a 69-yard punt to bury Michigan at its own 4. The Blackshirts forced a three-and-out of their own and Ameer Abdullah returned a short 33-yard Will Hagerup punt 11 yards to give Martinez and the NU offense the ball at the Michigan 31.
Seven plays later, Abdullah pulled the Huskers within two scores on his three-yard touchdown run to give Nebraska life at the end of the third quarter.
Trailing 31-17 entering the fourth quarter, the Blackshirts appeared to breathe more life into the Huskers by stopping the Wolverines' Robinson on 3rd-and-4 to set up a punt on 4th-and-7 at the Michigan 17.
NU's Wil Richards came free on a chance at a punt block attempt, but instead of blocking the punt was flagged for roughing the kicker. Instead of having the ball inside the Michigan 10 with a chance to pull within a score, Michigan had a fresh set of downs.
Robinson and the Wolverines took advantage by completing a 10-play, 86-yard march that covered 5:39. Robinson put the exclamation point on the Michigan victory by connecting with Martavious Odoms on a 38-yard touchdown pass at the back of the end zone against double coverage. The score put the Wolverines up 38-17 with 10:14 left.
Another miscue ensued, as Tim Marlowe returned the Wile kickoff 22 yards before fumbling. Michigan recovered at the NU 22.
The Blackshirts managed one more three-and-out to force a 42-yard field goal attempt that Brendan Gibbons missed wide right. But two plays later, Martinez fumbled  while being sacked to give Michigan the ball back at the Husker 31.
On the next play from scrimmage, Toussaint uncorked a highlight-reel 31-yard touchdown run to seal the 45-17 win.
Toussaint finished the game with 138 yards and two touchdowns on 29 carries. His rushing total matched the Huskers' team rushing total, as Martinez managed 49 yards on 16 carries for the Huskers.
Rex Burkhead, Nebraska's leading rusher coming into the game, was held to just 36 yards and was held out of the end zone for the first time all season.
Robinson added 83 yards and two more rushing scores for the Wolverines on the ground, as Michigan amassed 238 rushing yards. He also threw for 180 yards and two more scores while completing 11-of-18 passes.
Nebraska's three fumbles and other miscues helped Michigan amass 80 total plays for the game, while producing 418 total offense yards and a time of possession advantage of 41:13-18:39. It was Nebraska's least time of possession since at least 1983.The Huskers managed just 260 yards of total offense, as Martinez was held to 122 yards through the air while completing 9-of-23 passes. Nebraska ran just 54 plays.
Nebraska returns home to Memorial Stadium to close the regular season in the Heroes Game with Iowa on Friday, Nov. 25. Kickoff is set for 11 a.m. on Senior Day at Nebraska (central) on ABC.
Scoring Summary
Final: #20 Michigan 45, #17 Nebraska 17
Saturday, Nov. 19, 2011
Michigan Stadium (Ann Arbor, Mich.)
First Quarter (MICH, 10-7)MICH - 8:17 - Jeremy Gallon 6 pass from Denard Robinson (Brendan Gibbons kick), 8 plays, 79 yards, 4:01, MICH 7-0
MICH - 2:03 - Gibbons 42 FG - 9 plays, 30 yards, 4:20, MICH 10-0
NEB - 1:17 - Brandon Kinnie 54 pass from Taylor Martinez (Brett Maher kick), 3 plays, 65 yards, 0:46, MICH 10-7
Second Quarter (MICH, 17-10)
NEB - 12:12 - Maher 51 FG - 4 plays, 1 yard, 1:29, Tied, 10-10
MICH - 6:05 - Robinson 14 run (Gibbons kick) - 12 plays, 74 yards, 6:07, MICH 17-10
Third Quarter (MICH, 31-17)MICH - 11:23 - Robinson 1 run (Gibbons kick) - 7 plays, 33 yards, 3:29, MICH 24-10
MICH - 5:03 - Fitzgerald Toussaint 1 run (Gibbons kick) - 8 plays, 50 yards, 3:29, MICH 31-10
NEB - 0:53 - Ameer Abdullah 3 run (Maher kick) - 7 plays, 31 yards, 1:41, MICH 31-17
Fourth Quarter (MICH, 45-17)MICH - 10:14 - Martavious Odoms 38 pass from Robinson (Gibbons kick) - 10 plays, 86 yards, 5:46, MICH 38-17
MICH - 7:33 - Toussaint 31 run (Gibbons kick) - 1 play, 31 yards, 0:08, MICH 45-17

Final: #20 Michigan 45, #17 Nebraska 17
Attendance: 113,718
Time of Game: 3:30
Game Start: 11:00 a.m. (central)

It might not be as “schticky” as the “Corn Bowl”, “Axe” or the “Paul Bunyan”, but it’s a pretty neat trophy…very distinguished and meaningful.

IOWA CITY, Iowa and LINCOLN, Neb. - The Heroes Game trophy was designed for the University of Iowa and the University of Nebraska by Rickabuagh Graphics, the same company that UI and NU contracted for creation of the official logos for the Heroes Game. 
One of the prominent features of the logo - the laurel leaves - is also a prominent feature of the trophy.  The leaves are etched into the football that rests atop the trophy.  A variety of staff from each institution were also involved in the project.  In ancient Greece, a laurel leaf crown was awarded to the victors of the Olympic Games.  Those were the heroes of their time and the laurel leaf crown was considered the symbol of a hero.  In today's world,  laurel leaves have continued to be a symbol of high achievement and high ideals.
The badges that carry the score of each Heroes Game and the "Citizen Heroes" who will be honored annually at each Heroes Game are in the shape of a shield similar to the shape of the Heroes Game logo.  Since medieval days, shields have been a symbol of strength and heroism.  In fact, many heraldic crests including shields as emblems of endurance and stability.  This same shield symbolism continues today in the badges for many of our modern heroes, including fire fighters and police officers.
The trophy has four sides: 
  • the front prominently displays the Heroes Game logo in brushed aluminum
  • the back is labeled at its top "TRADITION" and includes brushed aluminum art that prominently displays images of Memorial Stadium and Kinnick Stadium, and some of the traditions of the two institutions and their football programs
  • the left side is labeled at its top "VALOR" and carries the badges that will be dated and carry the names of the two "Citizen Heroes"
  • the right side is labeled at its top "VICTORY" and carries the badges that will be dated and carry the final score of each Heroes Game
A dark gray acrylic etched with a corn stalk pattern adorns all four sides of the base of the trophy.  The trophy itself stands 30-inches tall when measured from the base to the highest point of the molded aluminum football that has been given a brushed stainless steel look and features the officially registered trademarks of the University of Iowa (the Tigerhawk) and the University of Nebraska (the block "N") in addition to the aforementioned laurel leaves.
The 2011 Heroes Game will be played Friday at Memorial Stadium in Lincoln, Neb. Kickoff is set for shortly after 11 a.m. CT, and the game will be televised live to a national audience by ABC.  The 2012 Heroes Game will be played Friday, Nov. 23, at Kinnick Stadium in Iowa City, Iowa.
The Heroes Game is the 14th "Trophy Game" between Big Ten Conference teams in the history of the Big Ten.  It is the only trophy game played by Nebraska against another Big Ten school.  Iowa plays Big Ten opponents in two other trophy games:  Iowa and Minnesota compete for Floyd of Rosedale and Iowa and Wisconsin play for possession of the Heartland Trophy.

Nebraska senior Mike Caputo was named one of the 10 semifinalists for the Burlsworth Trophy, which is given annually to the nation's top athlete who began his career as a walk-on. Caputo is the first Husker walk-on to be named a semifinalist for the award.

A two-year starter a center for the Huskers, Caputo has led an offensive line that ranked inside the top 15 nationally in rushing over the past two seasons. Caputo continued a tradition-rich walk-on program at Nebraska after choosing to walk on out of Millard North High School in Omaha, Neb. The senior was a key in the Huskers transition into a new offense for the 2011 season, helping NU rack up over 220 yards of rushing per game.

New to this year's award, fans are now able to vote for their favorite player via the AT&T Fan Vote beginning today (Nov. 22). To vote for Caputo, visit Fans may vote one time per day until Dec. 6. The field of 10 athletes will be cut to its final three on Nov. 29, while the winner will be announced on Dec. 9 at a banquet in Springdale, Ark.

The Trophy is named after Brandon Burlsworth, who walked on at Arkansas where he became a three-year starter and an All-American in 1998. Burlsworth was selected 63rd overall in the 1999 NFL draft by the Indianapolis Colts, but was tragically killed in a car accident four days later. The Burlsworth Foundation was created in his memory and supports the physical and spiritual needs of children, in particular those who have limited opportunities.

Lincoln -- Nebraska linebacker Lavonte David was named one of six finalists for the 27th annual Butkus Award on Tuesday morning.
David is the fourth Husker to be a finalist for this prestigious honor and looks to join 1993 winner Trev Alberts as Nebraska's second Butkus award winner. Nebraska's other finalists were Broderick Thomas (1988) and Ed Stewart (1994).
On the season, the 6-foot-1, 225-pounder leads the Huskers with 114 tackles, including 52 solo stops. The senior tops the Huskers with 10 tackles for loss and also leads the Blackshirts with a pair of interceptions. David had a season-high 17 tackles against Michigan on Saturday, one of five double-digit tackle performances in 2011. He is the fifth Husker in school history to record consecutive 100-tackle seasons.
David ranks seventh on Nebraska's career tackles list with 226 in just two seasons in the program and could move into the top five on the Huskers' career chart with eight tackles against Iowa. As a junior, he set a program record with 152 tackles to lead the Big 12.
The other five finalists were Dont'a Hightower (Alabama), Jarvis Jones (Georgia), Luke Kuechly (Boston College), Manti Te'o (Notre Dame) and Courtney Upshaw (Alabama). The winner will be announced on or before December 7.
Butkus Award Collegiate Finalists:
  • Lavonte David, Nebraska
  • Dont'a Hightower, Alabama
  • Jarvis Jones, Georgia
  • Luke Kuechly, Boston College
  • Manti Te'o, Notre Dame
Courtney Upshaw, Alabama

A real eye opener!
You’ve probably seen this or something similar to this before (with picture of the coaches).   But if not, thought you’d be interested (note coach in 1st picture of the article):
Iowa City, Iowa- The No. 2 Nebraska volleyball team (24-3, 17-2) clinched the first Big Ten Conference title in school history Tuesday night with a 3-0 (25-14, 25-14, 25-19) sweep of the Iowa Hawkeyes at Carver-Hawkeye Arena.  Nebraska has now captured 32 conference titles overall.
Before the Huskers made history on Tuesday night, Penn State had previously won the conference crown for eight-straight seasons. Minnesota claimed the title in 2002.
"This is not an easy conference to win," John Cook said. "We did it while dealing with a lot of things, but through the leadership of our captains, we found a way to come together and hang tough. We had to outlast all these other teams, a new coaching staff and had some big-time players to replace."
Gina Mancuso led the Huskers on the night with 14 kills, while Hannah Werth had 12 kills and nine digs. Lauren Cook notched her 15th double-double of the season with 32 assists and 10 digs. Jordan Wilberger had four block assists as Morgan Broekhuis had three.
The Huskers hit .386 for the match, while the Hawkeyes hit .114. Nebraska out-blocked Iowa 7-0 and out-dug them 45-34.
Nebraska came out in the first set, taking a 5-3 lead on a hitting error by the Hawkeyes. A kill from Jordan Wilberger put NU up 10-6, while the Huskers gained an 18-12 advantage after a block by Delano and Mancuso.

Nebraska went up 19-12 after the Hawkeyes committed another hitting error, forcing Iowa to use their second timeout.  A block by Wilberger and Broekhuis put NU ahead 23-14, and Nebraska went on to take the first set 25-14.
Wilberger led Nebraska in the first set with three kills on six attacks. Mancuso and Werth both had two kills, while Cook notched eight assists. Lara Dykstra tabbed five digs as Broekhuis and Werth both had four. The Huskers hit just .194 in the first set, but totaled three team blocks and 17 digs. Iowa hit .026 in the first set and had no team blocks.
Wilberger came out on fire in the second set, helping Nebraska to an early 4-0 lead. A service ace by Dykstra put NU ahead 8-4, while a block from Delano gave Nebraska a 12-6 advantage. Wilberger and Broekhuis combined for back-to-back kills as the Huskers took a 17-9 lead and forced Iowa to use a timeout. An ace from Dykstra put Nebraska up 19-10 and another ace by Paige Hubl gave NU a 22-11 lead. A block error by the Hawkeyes gave Nebraska the second set 25-14 as the Huskers headed into break up 2-0.
Mancuso and Werth both notched six kills in the second set as Cook had 15 assists. Dykstra had five digs in the set, en route to a team-total of 10 for the Huskers, and Wilberger put up two blocks. The Huskers hit .600 in the second set, while holding Iowa to .120 and no team blocks.
Broekhuis put NU ahead 4-2 in the third set, while a kill by Werth made it 6-3, Huskers. Wilberger notched a kill of her own as the Huskers took an 8-4 lead. NU used back-to-back three-point streaks to go up 15-8 on the Hawkeyes before Iowa scored three-straight points to make it 15-11, Huskers.  Nebraska used an error by the Hawkeyes to take an 18-11 lead, as a kill by Werth put NU up 21-13. Iowa would not go down as the Hawkeyes came within four at 23-18, but the Huskers went on to take the final set 25-19, securing the sweep over Iowa and their first Big Ten Championship.
Mancuso had six kills for the Huskers in the third set, while Werth notched four. Cook tallied nine assists and the Huskers hit .406 in the final set. NU had 18 digs and two team blocks, while Iowa had zero team blocks and only 13 digs. The Hawkeyes hit .195 in the third set.
The Huskers conclude the regular season at Northwestern on Saturday, Nov. 26 at 7 p.m. CT.

Lincoln, Neb. - The No. 4 Nebraska volleyball team (23-3, 16-2) sent the 2011 seniors out in dominant fashion with a 3-1 (12-25, 25-17, 25-13, 25-22) victory over the Wisconsin Badgers Saturday night at the NU Coliseum.

In front of 4,188 fans, NU honored seniors Brooke Delano, Brigette Root and Jordan Wilberger in their final home match of the regular season.
With the victory, the 2011 seniors earned the 109th win of their careers and captured their third conference title as the Huskers earned at least a share of this season's Big Ten Conference crown with the win. Nebraska can win the Big Ten title outright on Tuesday with a win over Iowa.
Hannah Werth led Nebraska on the night with her ninth double-double of the season, as she totaled 14 kills and 13 digs. Jordan Wilberger produced a stellar senior night performance, with a career-high 12 kills, while also tying her career-high hitting percentage of .750. Morgan Broekhuis recorded 10 kills on the night, along with eight digs. Lauren Cook tabbed 38 assists and six digs for NU.
Lara Dykstra led Nebraska defensively with 14 digs. She now has a total of 355 digs on the year and ranks second in the all-time freshman digs record at Nebraska.
The Huskers hit .193 for the match, while Wisconsin hit just .116. Nebraska was out-dug 60-54, but out-blocked the Badgers 10-7.

Lincoln, Neb.- Nebraska junior Hannah Werth was honored Tuesday by the American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) as the Sports Imports/AVCA Division I National Player of the Week.
Werth received the honor after recording two double-doubles in four-set wins over then-No. 19 Minnesota and Wisconsin.  Against Minnesota, she notched 14 kills while hitting .379 and tabbed 17 digs. She continued to perform at a high level against Wisconsin, tallying another 14 kills and 13 digs. For the week, she averaged 3.5 kills and 3.8 digs per set and hit .323 to help the Huskers jump to No. 2 in the latest AVCA Coaches Top-25 Poll.
The honor marks the 12th time an athlete from Nebraska has received the Sports Imports/AVCA Division I National Player of the Week award, with the most recent coming on Nov. 10, 2009 when Sydney Anderson received the honor.

The Hawkeyes and Huskers will honor two extraordinary people at their game Friday.

Those who sit in the lower level of the Devaney Center for Nebraska men's basketball may be pondering a hearing checkup. Don't bother. The words that coach Doc Sadler yells when his team transitions from defense to offense really are: "Push it! Push it!" A faster offensive tempo has been evident in two of the first three games for Nebraska (3-0), which hopes to keep up that pace Wednesday at 8 p.m. against Oregon (2-1).

Nebraska may have fallen short of its goal to reach the Big Ten title game, but that doesn't mean it's lost a desire for competition. Not even close. In fact, coach Bo Pelini seemed offended at the notion Monday. He said his Huskers (8-3, 4-3 Big Ten) are plenty motivated to face Iowa on Friday — in what will be the first time since 2008 that NU is playing a regular-season game without being in contention for a conference championship.

A Chamber of Commerce survey foresees the city's growth continuing to outpace the nation's.

Just 20 minutes into Nebraska's 45-17 loss to Michigan Saturday, I scrawled two items into my notebook: "UM: Good plan" and "NU in big trouble." The Wolverines led 7-0. NU's defense would play its guts out for the rest of the half while the offense would hit a big pass play. The halftime score looked close. But the hook was already set.

Meltdown at Michigan. Bust at the Big House. And lights out on a Big Ten title and a Bowl Championship Series bid. Nebraska's football team committed gaffes galore in its 45-17 loss to Michigan on Saturday. "If you could write a script on how to lose a football game, that would be the perfect example," senior safety Austin Cassidy said. Four personal fouls. Three fumbles. Three sacks.


NIGHT OF LEGENDS…Chance to see Tom Osborne in Sacramento!
Capital Christian School (CCS) will proudly host the First Annual "Night of Legends" at the CCS Performing Arts Center In Sacramento on Saturday, February 25, 2012. Night of Legends will feature a well-known College Hall of Fame Football Coach, Tom Osborne, who served our country in Congress. This event is for adults only (21 years and older). No childcare available.

Event Schedule:
7pm – Seated Dinner
7:45pm – Motivational Speech with Q&A
8:25pm – Closing Comments
Tickets are $50 per person or $320 for a table of 8.
For more info and to order tickets:

Contact: Scott Wasdin
Director of Development
Capital Christian School
(916) 856-5611 Ext. 1775

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