Tom Osborne takes center stage as bowl season winds down

The legendary Nebraska football coach was the talk of social media a look at the legendary coaches with the best bowl histories.
Clemson head coach Danny Ford, right, talks with Nebraska head coach Tom Osborne before the Tigers
Clemson head coach Danny Ford, right, talks with Nebraska head coach Tom Osborne before the Tigers / George Gardner/Staff, The Greenville

As the college football bowl season edges to a final crescendo, the Nebraska football team and its former coach took center stage. That in and of itself was a neat trick, since the Huskers finished the 2023 campaign with a 5-7 record thanks to a heartbreaking loss in its final game of the year.

No, the Nebraska football team didn’t play in a bowl. No, Tom Osborne didn’t do anything that should have had his name trending on social media. And yet, the legendary coach took center stage on Friday night when people started talking about the best coaches and best streaks in the history of college football.

Specifically, ESPN’s Sports Center began talking about what an accomplishment it was for Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney to get yet another 9-win season. The program then started comparing Swinney and Nick Saban’s streaks of 9-win seasons. 

And then the graphic showed why Nebraska football fans know that Tom Osborne was one of the top head coaches to ever exist in college football. The graphic, in fact, showed that the best coaches of the current era can’t hold a candle to what Osborne and the Nebraska football program as a whole were able to pull off.

Nebraska football coach takes center stage

It showed that Swinney’s impressive consecutive 9-win season streak currently sits at 13. That is just one season behind former Florida State Seminoles coach Bobby Bowden. 

Next on the list was Alabama’s Nick Saban, who has had 16 straight 9-win seasons. And then there’s Tom Osborne who was a major part of an incredible 33 straight seasons with at least 9 wins. A mark that appears to be on the same level as the most untouchable records in sports today.

The graphic doesn’t mean much to the current era of Nebraska football. In fact, in some regards it’s painful to see just where the Huskers are and where they were. But it’s still nice to be reminded of that level of excellence in Lincoln.