Millard North. If you said that name amongst Nebraskans, anyone that kept any sort of track of prep football would probably just shake their head.
Not in disgust mind you, but at the unbelievable dominance of a team, most of it keyed by an offensive line few could possibly imagine.
What that line helped the Mustangs to do, well, to some, it simply isn't right. Only twice did Millard North score under 30 points in a game. Only two other games were under 40. And, the final game against the renowned powerhouse, Creighton Prep., North pummeled them just as they had pummeled everyone else, destroying Prep. by over 30 points.
It just wasn't fair.
"It was fun." Nate Fehr stated. "It was never an issue of whether we would win or not. Heck, we could just run halfback up the middle every play and win."
"We knew we were going to win every game because nobody in the state could get by our linemen."
Linemen that all were either right around 300 lbs. or sailing well above it. Linemen that were anywhere from 6'2" on up.
Nate himself stands 6'6" and during the football season, weighs in around 280 lbs. Believe it or not though, his size wasn't enough to get him on the field all the time, having to fight for time with the likes of Seth Olsen, Adam Schroeder and so on.
Playing both sides of the ball, alternating starts by series on the offense, Fehr did get his share of time though and this year, he and his teammates are looking to take off where they left off last year.
It won't be easy.
"We're obviously losing some great players." Fehr said of the now departed, Seth Olsen, Adam Schroeder and T.J. O'Leary who are now gone from the offensive line, plus other All-Staters in Keith Lloyd, Adam Shada and John Kimbrough. "We're going to have a lot of strong guys though and we're all working real hard so we can try and bring home another one next year."
If the Mustangs can do that and if they can approach the impossible and do it in the fashion that it was done last year, you can count on another host of Millard North Mustangs being touted as All-this, All-that and just about everything else and yes, that includes Nate Fehr.
Nate will be one of many players from the school that will be watched to see how they develop. And, amongst those schools already sending him letters of interest are of course, Nebraska, but also Iowa, Iowa State, Kansas State and Kansas have added interest as well.
For most in-state kids that reside within the borders of NU central, it's usually a given that their first, second and even third choice for college of the future is the home of the Big Red. That applies to native Nebraskans though, as Seth Olsen who wasn't originally from Nebraska proved by going to Iowa and Allen Evridge, a two year citizen of the state that committed to NU, but ultimately opted out of that pledge, heading to Kansas State.
That would also apply to the Fehr, a native of Vancouver, but despite not being born in the Cornhusker state, when it comes to football, that's all he's ever known. "Ever since I knew what football was, I was watching Nebraska." he said. "I guess I grew up with it as much as anyone born here, so yeah, I'm a Husker fan."
While Fehr is a Husker fan, the same was said for teammate Olsen and Adam Shada, who also went to play for Iowa. And, Fehr himself is visiting Iowa this Summer and hopes to attend the Nike combine at the same place.
Does that mean he's headed for the land of the Hawkeyes? "Oh, you know, that's stuff we talk about." Fehr said of conversations with Olsen and other former teammates "but, we talk about a lot of stuff, so that's what it is."
As to the Huskers, an obvious fan of the Big Red, Fehr admits that if an offer came in writing from Nebraska, it would be hard not to take it and go. "I want to look around" he said "but, yeah, that would be hard not to commit if that happened."
It could be an offer that is ultimately inevitable for the probable future All-Stater. Until that happens though, Fehr has one goal on his mind, the same that was on his mind and his teammate's last year as well. "It's about getting back." Fehr said of the road to another state title. "That's what we all want. The recruiting attention is nice and I'll enjoy what I get, but winning another state title means more than anything to all of us."
Steve Ryan can be reached at email@example.com or 402-730-5619