I am right.

EDITOR'S NOTE: After the Cornhuskers' devastating loss on Friday, an emotionally tapped Red Clad Loon has resolved to take the week off. However, we at The Pond did not want to short-change our vast legions of loyal readers. So, after searching for minutes upon minutes, we luckily found a replacement for the Loon this Wednesday.

EDITOR'S NOTE: After the Cornhuskers' devastating loss on Friday, an emotionally tapped Red Clad Loon has resolved to take the week off. However, we at The Pond did not want to short-change our vast legions of loyal readers. So, after searching for minutes upon minutes, we luckily found a replacement for the Loon this Wednesday. Elmer G. Hicks, a resident of rural Unadilla and a die-hard Husker fan since 1962, has graciously agreed to offer up his opinions for this week's edition of Winging It. Enjoy.

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As Friday's God-awful disaster of a travesty of a full-scale debacle showed, there are a lot of problems facing the team. Thankfully, I have the solutions to all of them.

I am Nebraska's most knowledgeable follower, and everyone else is not. Therefore, you should listen to me, because I know what is best. When I say that the only thing keeping us from winning every game is that Frank Solich calls plays that do not work, such as passes, you should agree. Listen to me. I regularly purchase officially-licensed Nebraska Cornhusker items, so it is perfectly reasonable to demand to see at least eleven wins a year. The reason Solich doesn't get the same respect from his players as Osborne did is because he is not a native Nebraskan. This is the same reason that radio fella wasn't liked very much. Now that Crouch's Heisman chances are kaput, I think Jammal Lord should have gotten more game experience. You know, it's a slap in the face to true college football fans like me that two Florida teams are at the top of the rankings. I'd like to see them play a bowl game in Lincoln in January and see how well they'd do. Fairbury Hot Dogs are simply the best game-day delicacy in the continental United States, bar none. I am right.

I know about everything for the simple fact that I am much more intelligent than everyone else, and I am justified in calling people names when people do not recognize this. They deserve this treatment because they are idiots. Take, for example, our lack of defensive ability. Not only do I know that the defensive alignments that Craig Bohl selects are inferior, but every offense that we face knows it, too. I have alerted members of our defensive coaching staff of this fact in a strongly-worded letter to the South Stadium offices, but as Friday's results show, they have yet to make use of my advice. This is because they are a bunch of idiots. There must be a Stoops brother somewhere looking for a job.

Pay attention to me. The national media is full of wiseacres who have never even been to Nebraska, and so they are biased against us. A player from Notre Dame could commit a triple murder and it wouldn't get mentioned in the news, but it's a international incident if our third-string long snapper crosses the street against a light. Everyone outside Nebraska is amoral and mean-spirited and takes pleasure in tragedies like fatal car crashes, terrorism and seeing us lose. The Associated Press shows undue favoritism to each and every team that I happen to dislike. I know precisely why Oklahoma only dropped one spot after we beat them -- because I don't like Oklahoma, that's why. Listen to me. Through the first 11 games of the season I was OK with this Bowl Championship Series stuff. But now that we've lost I think this system is a bunch of crap and I believe that a playoff, with my clever idea of the games being played at various bowl sites, is the only way to determine a true national champion. My correctness knows no bounds.

If you decide to have a game party, make sure you have one when we're sure to win in a blowout. That way your wife isn't too upset to cook you supper later. Friday's game would have been much more enjoyable if the referees wouldn't have blown every single call that went against us. If we get those calls and Crouch doesn't slip down and we control the time of possession better and if the field isn't slippery and if the game is played in normal altitudes and if Colorado doesn't score on every other play, we win that game. Easily. But regardless of how bad we looked, we still have better-looking outfits than the Buffaloes. I swear, these wacko uniforms popping up all over college football these days make me sick. Individuality and flair on the football field is like the forward pass -- they must be stamped out before they spead too far. Unlike Solich, Tom Osborne had the moral character to understand this. He never threw the ball and everyone on his team wore black shoes. Moral character, running and black shoes played a big part in his national championships. I am correct.

One of the things that I like best about myself is my inherent sense of duty. Because I know precisely what is best for the team, I come forward with the information right away and am not shy about sharing my views. As soon as I determine what is wrong with the offense, the defense and special teams, I speak up. But despite me yelling for us to hold onto the damned ball for once, to just block someone for the love of Christ, or to scream about how easy it is to get some pressure on the quarterback, the players and coaches just don't seem to listen. So I also write letters to various newspapers, post my opinions under a pseudonym on the Internet or call in to a sports radio show and share my views until the studio host says something about a commercial break.

But I know all these problems can be fixed. We simply need to recruit better. If we get players who turned out like Grant Wistrom, Ahman Green and Mike Brown, we will win more national championships. This is what is really important. Listen to me. I have left several telephone messages with recruiting coordinator Dave Gillespie's secretary to alert him of players I have read about on the Internet who have mentioned that they are interested in Nebraska, along with dozens of other schools. But I have yet to see any tangible evidence that they've followed up on any of my suggestions. So it is clear that Dave Gillespie is not nearly as intelligent as I am.

Once I am finished with this column, I am going to write a sharply-worded letter to the Lincoln Journal Star newspaper about the problem of people standing up in front of me and cheering during the games. This makes it hard for me to see or hear what's going on and help the team by offering my opinion. I believe that by the time next year's first home game comes around, my letter will resolve this critical problem once and for all.

I am right.

==ELMER==
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