October 15, 2011

35 before 35: #35

Go to a Nebraska-Ohio State football game

When I woke up last Saturday morning, I had no idea I was about to fulfill one of the items on my 35 before 35 list. But at 3:30 p.m., I found out my parents had turned down tickets to the Nebraska-Ohio State football game in Lincoln and those tickets were still up for grabs. I pounced, and soon a friend and I were careening toward Lincoln to join 85,424 other people cheering for the Huskers.

There's nothing quite like the atmosphere at Memorial Stadium on game day. The people. The red. The cheering. The tunnel walk. It's pretty incredible! Our seats were in North Stadium, top row—which meant we had a back rest! Rumor had it legendary quarterback Tommie Frazier was in one of the club boxes behind us, though I never saw him myself. And Ndamukong Suh was in the house, as evidenced by the crowd's cries of "SUUUUUHHHHHHHH" every so often. (If you didn't know better, you'd think the crowd was booing the action on the field—which it did a few times, especially in the first half.)

By halftime, we were trailing 20-6, and I was fairly soaked, thanks to the rain. Fortunately, the temperature was in the upper 60's or lower 70's, so it was bearable. I turned to my friend and said that if I'd been watching at my parents' house (since I don't have TV), I would have quit watching and gone home already.

The second half was absolutely amazing. With nearly 11 minutes left in the 3rd quarter, we were down by 21 ... and then the tide began to turn. Lavonte David "recovered a fumble" but basically ripped the ball out of the Ohio State quarterback's hands. And then a different Taylor Martinez showed up on the field. He and Rex Burkhead (whom the guy in the row ahead of me repeatedly called a stud) worked together to put the game away. It was the biggest comback in Husker football history! (Let me give some credit where credit is due, though—perhaps I'm being pessimistic, but I don't think the Huskers would have pulled it off had the Ohio State quarterback not gone out with an injury. The backup just couldn't make anything happen for the Buckeyes.)

And on a sad note, I witnessed defensive tackle Jared Crick's last game as a Husker. Coach Pelini announced this week that he's out for the rest of the season with an injury ... methinks this does not bode well for the defense!

So, why was this one of my 35 before 35 wishes? For the answer to that question, we have to go back about 10 years to my arrival on the Grace College campus. Tons of people from Ohio attended Grace, and they were pretty passionate about their Buckeyes. (And also their state. If I have to hear Ohio referred to as "God's Country" one more time, I may lose my lunch.) Soon, I began to dislike Ohio State football—even though my beloved Huskers never played them. I wanted them to lose—especially when they had that run where they were incredibly good. I fully understand that it's petty and probably even "unChristian," but I'm being honest here. That dislike never really wore off, and when the rumors of a Nebraska move to the Big Ten started swirling, my first thought was, "Good. Now we can beat the pants off of Ohio State." And thus, my desire to attend a Nebraska-Ohio State football game was born.


  1. Uh-oh...I know I didn't hear you cracking on Ohio!! lol...

    I'm not a huge football fan, but I love the rivalries! :)

  2. Nice!! I can't stand the Ohio State fans. So, what was the final score?

  3. I left that part out, didn't I? Nebraska 34, Ohio State 27.

    And there was an incredibly obnoxious Ohio State fan in our section ... well, he was obnoxious for about 2-1/2 quarters :-)


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