"Our program is the state of Nebraska's program. I truly believe that," Doc Sadler said.
A lot has been written on message boards and said on my show about my feelings towards the Nebraska Basketball program. I have finally come to the point where I think it's time to set the record straight and admit how I truly feel about the 2 basketball teams that I cover. 590's coverage of the Jays has nothing to do with what I'm about to say. I just made up my mind finally.
I like Creighton more than Nebraska when it comes to basketball. Period.
There. I said it. So stop telling me what we all know. Am I a fan of the Bluejays? I don't know yet. But the more press conferences like today that I have to listen to and I'll be getting closer to becoming a real one.
I don't like Nebraska basketball. That I know.
The reason why I'm saying it now is the statement that I quoted above. I heard Doc make that statement today at the press conference and just shook my head at the arrogance. While I don't know Doc personally, I have to wonder who he is trying to convince? You never hear Coach Dana Altman say things like that. He knows that it does nothing for your program in the long run. Winning is all that matters - not who's program the state owns. Sadler has said those things before - but today was really disrespectful. I saw something I really didn't like in Hawaii when Doc got thrown out by saying "F#ck You!" to a ref in front of a microphone. Today was the 2nd time he caused me to dislike his behavior.
Sitting in the lobby of the building that is the home of the Creighton Bluejays, Doc showed what he thinks of CU...which isn't very much. Thus it makes it easy for me to now lead the charge to boycott against this game and the cheers when Creighton plays Nebraska next year in Omaha. It's the arrogance that Nebraska basketball has that really bothers me. It's the humble nature of Altman's staff that makes me really like working with them.
One program has won 20 games for 9 straight years and was ranked 13th for attendance last year. The other hasn't won 20 games this decade. Knock Altman's post season record all you want but at least he's won A GAME in the tourney.
I said today on the air that I was surprised that Steve Pederson didn't call Creighton AD Bruce Rasmussen to tell him about what they were doing with the Qwest Center. Bruce would never expect that type of treatment from anyone. Except that is the exact kind of thing he would do if the roles were reversed. As Rick Majerus said, Bruce is one the best AD's in the Midwest and I have the utmost respect for him and his staff. He is all class and never wants to make waves with anyone. SP couldn't care less what Bruce thinks and that's why he had MECA talk to CU about the situation instead of doing it himself. It would have been very easy for him to make the call. He didn't.
Bottom line - the contrast between the two programs makes it very easy for me to favor one over the other. Creighton is open. Nebraska tells you to F'off. Creighton is about respecting the job you have to do. Nebraska is all about control. Creighton is appreciative. Nebraska is arrogant.
Sure, 590's carrying of the Bluejay games opened doors for me but I believe the relationships you craft once you are inside mean a lot more in the long run. Coach Dana Altman and Brian Fish gave up their time to play in our golf tournament to raise money for a former Husker's charity at my request. While NU does a lot of great things for our state, I would find it hard to believe that NU would do the same if the roles were reversed.
Before you start hammering me for covering football - there is a difference in how I feel about football versus basketball. Nebraska football operates in a different world to me. 5 National championships allow me to do that. The football program recruits the top players in the country to come play in Lincoln. You say Nebraska - and you think football. Football is king in this country - it's our passion. There really is something very special about Memorial Stadium on a Fall afternoon. It's a lot of fun to cover Nebraska football and the passion of their fans. I enjoy covering the games a lot but there is a different level of access that I have with CU. (No you can't use that paragraph to start an arguement about the CU/NU Bi Fan with me. Covering NU is my job)
I have zero problem with Bill Callahan and staff no matter what you think. I think he's done a good job so far and just like me - he had to learn what the Nebraska football tradition was all about. Now, he runs the tradition. Some former players might not love him, but winning cures all ills. I wish them nothing but the best in the upcoming season. Callahan might be arrogant and rude to the media but he has taken a team to the Super Bowl. He plays on a different level then the rest of the coaches at Nebraska.
Back to basketball and the Huskers vs. Oregon game for a moment. Jays fans should NOT go to this game. Nebraska fans - go and have fun. Yet, the fact that Nebraska is shipping in a $10,000 court should tell you that Pederson understands that they are doing something shady. When other basketball events happen at the Qwest, they don't bring in their own floor. But then again, those events aren't involving the arch rival of CU. Nebraska knows that.
I am not happy with Bluejay fans for simply ignoring this story. If you love CU, you should very upset about this. You can't do anything about it as the Qwest Center isn't yours to control but you can keep away from the event.
If you love the Jays, keep your money in your pocket. It's the only way that it won't happen again. It has to be a flop or at least a semi-flop. Even if someone offers you free tickets - you should not go. Nebraska fans need to show that they can fill the Qwest...and I'm not sure they can without the bi- fan buying tickets. Time to pick a side my friends for real. Where does your heart lie?
If you need an image to help illustrate what I'm talking about...well, here you go: Would you let someone sleep with your wife if it just happened once? Of course not. Your building is your wife. Your building is your castle.
When you look up at the big screen at the Qwest and the Under Armor man asks "Who will protect this house?" Do you answer "I will, I will"? If you do, put your action where your mouth is and boycott the event. Protect your house - even if you don't own it.