Nebraska football: Tommy Armstrong an unfair target as season ends

MADISON, WI - OCTOBER 29: Tommy Armstrong Jr.
MADISON, WI - OCTOBER 29: Tommy Armstrong Jr. /

This Nebraska football season now includes backbiting and cheap shots.

2017 has truly been a miserable season for the Nebraska football program. There’s the (very good) chance that the team could post its worst record since 1961 should it lose to Iowa today.

There’s the even better chance that no matter what the Huskers do this afternoon, the school will be on the hunt for it’s third coach in four years. And now there is the father of a former Cornhusker personally attacking the team’s former quarterback.

Keyshawn Johnson Sr. was asked earlier this week what his thoughts about the potential firing of Riley. The pair have been good friends for years and Riley was the main reason his son, Keyshawn Johnson Jr had committed to the Huskers.

While also making it clear that his son would not be attending Nebraska if Riley was indeed fired, the former NFL wide receiver took a shot at former quarterback Tommy Armstrong. “”What is it that he’s done wrong? Other than try to build a program … He’s playing with a quarterback that couldn’t hit the side of a bus for two years.”

The quarterback Johnson Sr. was talking about was clearly Armstrong, who was the starter under Riley in the coach’s first two seasons. Considering that the offense was quite a bit better under Armstrong, it seems like an odd target for an attack.

Because the comments were not exactly secret, Armstrong saw them and responded in his own way. That is to say, the quarterback was about as classy as you could expect from a competitor who single-handedly lifted the Huskers to a few wins over the course of his career.

Armstrong also made sure everyone knew he’s got the Nebraska program’s back as a whole. While Johnson Sr. isn’t wrong that Riley was never really given much of a chance here (people were calling for his head three games into his first season) Tommy Armstrong isn’t the reason the program has struggled in this regime.

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Members of the Nebraska football program often claim it is a family. That it has turned into a full-fledged dysfunctional family is yet another reason why a change at the top is needed, even if none of the latest spat is Riley’s fault.