NU Associate AD Clears Up “Redout” Website

July 14, 2010

The nice thing about being “Lincoln’s Husker Radio” is that you get a chance to not only air the games and SportsNightly (weeknights 6-9p hosted by Lane Grindle…… you owe us commercial time…), but you also get access to the people who make the decisions around Husker athletics.

Wednesday, NU Senior Associate Athletic Director (fancy title for “Number 2”) Marc Boehm joined us to clarify the meaning behind the website  The athletic department/Omaha World Herald collaborative effort has raised a few eyebrows in the state about “targeting one game” (Texas) and not being “the Nebraska way.”  But it has also drawn the interest of the national media, namely ESPN college football writer Pat Forde, who had some pointed things to say about how NU was shedding its image as a gracious and classy fan base.

Check out our interview with Marc Boehm and see why this may not be quite as inflammatory as some (namely Jack) make it out to be.

We also clear up some rumors about Big Ten Network appearances by the Huskers this upcoming sports season and talk about stadium expansion and the new basketball practice facility.

Marc Boehm interview on “Jack & John in the Morning”


Show Rewind 7/13: The End of the Star City Parade & NU Athletic Department Gone Mad?

July 13, 2010

-Today we talked with Katie Tauer, the President of  the Board for Go Lincoln Go! (formerly the Updowntowners) the group in charge of organizing and running the Star City Holiday Parade.  As you probably know by now, the parade will likely be losing its public funding during this budget cycle (to the tune of about $70K), but the Mayor seemed confident the parade would be able to go on via private donations.  Katie didn’t paint such an optimistic picture, as she said the future of the parade and perhaps the entire Go Lincoln Go organization may be in doubt unless there’s some significant new financial support that emerges within the next couple weeks.  While we think the majority of our listeners are lukewarm on the parade, we also think it’s worth noting that it would be a disappointment if Lincoln lost its longtime citywide event/festival organizer when we’re right on the verge of having some of the best space this city’s ever seen for Go Lincoln Go-type events with Union Plaza next summer and the space surrounding the Arena a few years later.  To hear the entire interview, click here.

-We also talked about the continuing discussion surrounding the “Red Out Across The World” promotion that the UNL Atheltic Department is pushing virally in partnership with the Omaha World-Herald.  John thinks this a bold, unprecedented move for the the athletic department to point to a specific opponent, which may result in the program “losing face”.  Jack, on the other hand, thinks the actual “calllng out” that’s happening here has been greatly exaggerated, and it’s simply a smart way for the Department to capitalize on a huge event when they may be in need of a little extra revenue in the coming years. See the video we’re talking about here, hear the guys’ arguments here, and weigh in with your thoughts below in the comments section.   One programming note–on Wednesday’s show, we’ll have Associate Athletic Director Marc Boehm on the show to address the criticisms of this campaign.

Baby Mitchell Guesses

July 12, 2010

For all of you who entered the Bun in the Oven Contest–below is the breakdown of the guesses.  Remember, the winning entry will have the gender guessed correctly AND be the closest to the date of the baby’s actual arrival.  If you hit it on the nose with the date/time, but get the gender wrong, you’re out of luck.  Let me know if your entry somehow didn’t show up on here.  EDIT:  Trying to get this to format better.


Mike G. 14-Jul 10:45 p.m. Maria S. 16-Jul 7:30 a.m. Patsy M. 17-Jul 6:00 a.m. Brock M. 20-Jul 5:00 a.m. Jessie J. 20-Jul 12:00 p.m. Michaela M. 21-Jul 5:48 p.m. Tony W. 22-Jul 11 a.m. Meagan 22-Jul 2:15 p.m. Scott P. 22-Jul 7:45 p.m. Dan W. 22-Jul 8:37 p.m. Grady B. 23-Jul 3:49 a.m. Christie H. 23-Jul 6:03 a.m. Leslie K. 23-Jul 8:42 p.m. Linda S. 24-Jul 10:16 a.m. Jessica V. 24-Jul 8:23 p.m. Jonathan L. 25-Jul 6 a.m. Erin W. 28-Jul 10:35 p.m.


Tina 15-Jul 11:15 a.m. Rhonda H. 18-Jul 2:30 a.m. Dennis H. 19-Jul 4:42 a.m. Karen C. 20-Jul 6:57 a.m. Jack Mitchell 20-Jul 12:50 a.m. Shirley V. 20-Jul 10:24 p.m. Cindy H. 20-Jul 10:59 p.m. Nicole S. 21-Jul 3:45 p.m. Kathy C. 21-Jul 10:00 p.m. Jack H. 21-Jul 10:07 p.m. John Bishop 22-Jul 12:45 p.m. Jen S. 22-Jul 4: 09 p.m. Russ P. 22-Jul 4:47 a.m. Joel W. 23-Jul 3:16 a.m. Scott A. 24-Jul 3:33 a.m. Tania K. 24-Jul 12:15 p.m.

7/8 Show Rewind & Breaking News: The New Super, No Jimmy Buffett and a worldwide Redout

July 8, 2010

Steve Joel

-Today on the show we spoke with the new Superintendent of Lincoln Public Schools, Dr. Steve Joel.  We went in-depth with Dr. Joel about the achievement gap that so many school districts face and how those specific challenges differ in Lincoln as compared to Grand Island.  He also talked about his philosophy on what makes an effective teacher and standardized testing.  Perhaps most importantly, he noted that he will likely err on the side of safety when it comes to making the call on potential snow days, even though he actually didn’t know that decision would be in his jurisdiction when he was offered the job.  In the short time he was with us, we were fully impressed by Joel’s engaging nature as a speaker and his clear passion for the education field.  We’ll see how the public responds to him when budget time comes around.  Hear the full audio here.

Brooklyn Decker

-This afternoon we learned about the lineup of entertainers and athletes who will make their way to Lincoln for the Special Olympics.  Now the opening ceremonies likely will not be open to the public, but it’s interesting to note that the entertainment slated to speak/perform at the event include model Brooklyn Decker, gospel singer Sandi Patty, Christian/Pop band Jars of Clay and American Idol contestant Michael Sarver.  In addition Andy Roddick and former NFL players Joey Browner and Matt Blair will be among the current and former professional athletes putting on clinics and demonstrations while the games are in town.  We had been hearing a rumor that Jimmy Buffett was going to be in town for the ceremonies, which seemed too odd to be true.  Apparently it was.

-Finally, today we’re starting to hear about a movement called “Red Out  Around the World” which has its own website, and encourages people to “Wear Red. Be Loud. Beat Texas”.  We were curious to find out if this movement was something organic among fans, whether it was something official from the University or if it was something altogether different, so I did a search to find out who owns the site.  We were surprised to find out that the owner of this mysterious website is none other than the Omaha World-Herald.  A ploy to sell papers?  Perhaps.  Still, the video got us really jacked up.

The Lakers Disaster & The State of Nebraska Democrats

July 7, 2010

The last couple of days on the show we’ve spent a lot of time discussing Mark Lakers’ decision to exit the Nebraska Gubernatorial Race, why it happened, and the aftermath thereof.  Before we get too far into this discussion we should point out that we feel pretty strongly that having a robust contest between the parties for the Governor’s office is in the best interests of all Nebraskans, regardless of their current opinion of Governor Dave Heineman’s job performance.  In fact, the Governor himself said as much when we visited with him just before Lakers joined the race.  Unfortunately, we’ve been denied that to this point in the race as Lakers showed an inability to get out in front of the issues and actually develop a plan of attack that drove dialog about the best interests of the state  (that’s to say nothing of his inability to keep track of his donors).

Also, while Nebraska is certainly a very “red” state, keep in mind the inroads Democrats have made in the last few years in both Federal elections and the footholds they’ve had locally in Lincoln and Omaha.  If I’m a Nebraska Democrat, I’d have been looking to build greatly from that momentum in upcoming state races, but it seems the result has been the exact opposite.

All of that said, the Democrats’ next move in this race is of great interest.  Thus, on Tuesday we spoke with Joe Jordan of Nebraska Watchdog (full audio here) and he speculated that Douglas County Commissioner and former Omaha Mayor Mike Boyle may be the  Dems’ most likely candidate, if they name one at all.  Well, it turns out Boyle isn’t interested.  That may be for the best if you’re a Nebraska Democrat as Boyle’s name recognition is very marginal outside of Omaha, and there’s also that pesky Mayoral recall election of 1987 in his past.

But is there anyone with more name recognition than Boyle out there in today’s Democratic Party?  Is there anyone who can make this 100 day campaign look remotely worth watching?  Vic Covalt, state chair of the Nebraska Democratic Party thinks so, and he indicated to us today that the party will certainly find someone more than adequate to fill Lakers’ void (audio here).

Right now the State Democrats have a serious problem with recognizability of potential candidates.  While Republicans have their party superstars in existing state offices, often uncontested for those positions (Bruning, Foley, Osborn, Fulton, perhaps Stenberg), they’ve also developed a reputation for candidates and campaigns that are more accessible, less guarded, and have developed better working relationships with media around the state.  Because the Democrats haven’t developed this ‘farm system’ of recognizable talent, they’re now in a position where we have a hard time even coming up with one Democratic name that would make sense to take a shot at the Governor’s seat, where we could probably think of 5-10 Republican names who could have a shot in the post-Dave era.

So where do you turn if you’re the Nebraska Democrats?  Frankly, if I were the State Chair, I’d put a call into Chris Beutler, even though it’d be a massive hailmary.  Beutler seems to have increased his popularity substantially in Lincoln after a close election victory to put him in office, he’s got executive experience, and he’s got extensive, extensive experience in state government.   While Beutler himself almost certainly wouldn’t answer that call (perhaps he would in 2014?), he fits the mold of the visibility/name-recognition/experience formula that’s led to Republican dominance.   I’m not sure anyone else does.  Regent  Chuck Hassebroek is an unknown.  The Legislature doesn’t offer a lot of options as Tom White is busy,  and Conrad/McGill/Mello are still too green (and two have re-election battles right now),  but the Dems may do well to start investing in those names right now for the future.  What about Steve Lathrop?  He not only has recognizability as a respected State Senator, but he’s also got some additional visibility in Lincoln and Omaha as you’ll occasionally see him in TV commercials for his practice.  Further, Lathrop’s already got an ongoing dialog with the Governor though their dealings in the last several legislative sessions, and one would think that his words would engender a response from the Governor simply by virtue of their previous work together.

With all of that in mind, I’d guess that this idea has been floated to Lathrop before and he’s declined in favor of his lucrative career.  Perhaps a short campaign will be more palatable, however, to Lathrop.  Let’s hope the Democrats make the call because a one-candidate race or something that looks like a one-candidate race isn’t in any of our best interests.

Cornhusker Classics: 1982 Nebraska vs. Iowa

July 1, 2010

It’s going to sound blasphemous to anyone who has followed Nebraska football from my generation, but the 1982 Huskers are probably my favorite Nebraska team of all time.

“Wha!?!”, you say.  “What about 1994, Osborne’s first national title?  1995 was the most dominant team ever!  1997 was memorable because it was T.O.’s last!  Heck, if you’re going to pick something from the ’80’s, then it has to be 1983, right?”

Nope.  I’m sticking with 1982.  Sure they didn’t win the national title, but they should have had it not been for crooked officiating at Penn State.  It’s easy to say any of the title teams is your favorite because they went all the way, but my choice of the ’82 Huskers is due in large part because of timing.  As a sixth grader, football players were still larger than life heroes.  They all could achieve superhuman feats on the field and they were all upstanding members of society off of it.  A kid literally looked up to a Husker.

Now that same could hold true in 1983, but there was something more about the ’82 team.  While in ’83 there was an aura of invincibility, 1982’s Huskers still had (thanks to the loss) that element of human frailty.  The challenge was also more daunting for the ’82 Cornhuskers.  Can you imagine today playing a non-conference schedule that featured Iowa, at Penn State and at Auburn?  And in 1982, Oklahoma was a mountain to climb.  The 1983 Sooners, while they put up a good fight, only won 7 games.

That season also featured one of the great individual performances in Nebraska history as Mike Rozier fought through a hip pointer to rush for 139 yards against a tough Missouri team.  That game was also noted for Randy Jostes’s cheap-shot that knocked Turner Gill out of the contest.  And I was there!

When you look at the roster, the stars from ’83 were all in place in 1982, plus you had arguably the greatest center in college football history, Dave Rimington.  The defense was more stout.  And the Huskers place kicker, Kevin Seibel, still kicked it old school, straight-on style.  Now THAT’S football!

So color me unusual, but if asked to pick a favorite Husker team, I’ll take the 1982 vintage.  A fine red wine indeed!

Now enjoy their season opener against the Iowa Hawkeyes on this edition of “Cornhusker Classics”