Huskers fans relieved to have Osborne back manning the helm
COLUMBUS, Neb. -- Cattle trucks rumble down Highway 30 on another dreary day in mediocrity. The sun has been trying its darnedest to poke its head out, a DJ crackles between hog reports and outdated songs. But the rain keeps coming, and the banks of the Loup Power Canal are about to give.
In every good fairy tale, there is a hero and a villain. Nebraskans don't generally hate. That would be considered rude. But for the better part of four years, they've harbored a deep resentment for Steve Pederson.
Bill Callahan walks off the practice field near a building that bears Osborne's name. Every day is a new confrontation complete with bright lights, hastily called news conferences and probing questions. On Wednesday, a media type sees former NU defensive coordinator Charlie McBride wandering around campus and leaks that Callahan has been fired and McBride, who's eight years retired, will take over.
It is just before 7 o'clock, gray skies are giving way to darkness, and Tom Osborne walks to the parking lot and fumbles for the keys to his SUV. He is unassuming -- his briefcase looks more like a black beach bag stuffed with papers; his keys are operated the old-fashioned way, with no remote. A man who's been waiting in the parking lot asks for his autograph, and Osborne gives him a grandfatherly smile. "Got it!" the guy says to a buddy as they rush off.