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Nebraska Might Just Be Holding a Grudge Against Texas

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Nebraska has been on the losing end of its recent skirmishes with Texas. First, there was the "phantom" second at the end of last year's Big 12 Championship; then, there was the resentment that bubbled up in regards to conference expansion, which just seemed like ineffectual—though righteous—whining about Texas commandeering a conference.

And now we have a one-sided, hammer-and-nail rivalry. Except Nebraska, the nail, appears thrilled to throw time and money into marketing it.


This global red out is oriented around Texas' date in Lincoln on October 16, and it's very slickly produced. (It refers to a website owned by the Omaha World-Herald, but sources from YouTube accounts connected to the university itself.) It also makes Nebraska look a bit monomaniacal.

Big Red hasn't beaten the boys in burnt orange since a 22-6 in the Big 12 Championship in 1999. In their five meetings this decade, Texas has won by an average of 5.5 points per game; throw out a 24-point romp in 2003, and that margin of victory becomes 2.25 points per game, with no game decided by more than a field goal. It's doubtful whether the team that won all those games—and has a national title this century—is worried about this as a rivalry. But Nebraska clearly is.

And building up the last conference matchup with the Longhorns seems to me to be putting a lot of chips on the table for one make-or-break hand. Nebraska should be contending for a Big 12 title this year. Though replacing Ndamukong Suh is an impossible task, a more experienced offense should pick up what many think will be a strong defense. There's a chance Nebraska could earn the last BCS bowl bid the Big 12 ever awards.

So why focus on just Texas? It makes Big Red look bad: Humbled, spiteful of a school with arguably less football tradition, Nebraska focusing one year on retribution against a non-divisional foe just seems off. And it's the perfect way to get the sports world laughing at the Cornhuskers should a Longhorns stampede occur.

Nebraska's taking a risk based on emotion and gambling that their team can win one game that their season will revolve around. If the Huskers can't deliver, it'll be hard to call this campaign—or this season—anything but a failure.


This post originally appeared on the Sporting Blog. For more, see The Sporting Blog Archives.