Nebraska football has prime incentive for blowout driven by Northwestern villainy streak

Nebraska football cornerback Decaprio Bootle (23) and linebacker Will Honas (3) tackle Northwestern Wildcats quarterback Aidan Smith (11) in the second half (Bruce Thorson-USA TODAY Sports)
Nebraska football cornerback Decaprio Bootle (23) and linebacker Will Honas (3) tackle Northwestern Wildcats quarterback Aidan Smith (11) in the second half (Bruce Thorson-USA TODAY Sports) /

It’s not like they really needed it, but Nebraska football should have even more incentive to bully Northwestern this fall due to their reprehensible acts.

It’s weird to think of the Wildcats as a villain in the Big Ten. More often than not, they’re usually the underdog squad that the entire country can get behind. But the current coaching staff seems bound and determined to make sure most of the Big Ten is happy to band against them.

Thanks to an upset loss in Ireland to open last season, Nebraska football is already going to be hunting for a measure of revenge. But now the Huskers should take solace in the fact that should they decide to run it up, there likely won’t be many people who have an issue with it.

Following the firing of Pat Fitzgerald last month, it felt like the athletic director and school president were putting on their black hats. However, if they were originally the villains in the weird little drama that featured players accusing teammates and coaches of hazing by simulating sex acts, the Northwestern coaching staff seems to want to take the pressure off.

Earlier this week, several Cats coaches were spotted wearing t-shirts that read, “Cats Against the World.” The shit also had Fitzgerald’s old number, 51 emblazoned on it. The implication seems pretty obvious here. Somehow, the guys who were hazing players to such extremes that lawsuits have been filed, believe they are the victims in all this.

If you’re a Nebraska football fan watching this unfold from the outside, the questions you’re probably asking are:

A) Who thought this was a good idea?

B) What does the interim coach, who you would assume is just trying to get past all this have to say about this?

It turns out that the answer to both those questions appears to be, David Braun.

When the man who has been tasked with leading the Wildcats against Nebraska football and the rest of “the world” this fall was asked his thoughts on the guys who now work for him, pretending to somehow be the ones who were wronged, his answer was about as disappointing as I probably should have expected.

No, it’s not Braun’s business to “censor anyone’s free speech.” Of course, not being an arm of the government, Braun wouldn’t be violating anyone’s free speech by telling them to take the shirts off.

It would, however, be a demonstration that the new head coach understands that at the very least, those shirts are tone-deaf. They’re almost certainly offensive to the kids who lodged the complaints that got Fitzgerald fired.

Nebraska football should absolutely destroy Northwestern

Count me as someone who could never bring himself to hate the other NU. They were more annoying and frustrating than anything else. However, the school’s actions during and after the hazing scandal has me rethinking my position.

I’m not firmly in the camp of “score as many as possible in this fall’s game.” Keep the starters playing in the fourth quarter. Don’t let off the gas. Crush them.

There was a time when Nebraska football would have looked like the villain if they’d done all that this year. Thankfully, Northwestern is bound and determined to play the villain. Let them. Then punish them for it.