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Thursday, November 6, 2008

Keegan

Keegan: NU game special for one

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Turner Gill, Irving Fryar, Roger Craig, Tom Osborne. Such names make Nebraska football fans, which is to say all Nebraskans, think back to the glory days.

For Kansas University special teams player Micah Brown, they mean more. They're family friends. Micah's father, Todd, played for Osborne and with Gill, Fryar and Craig.

"We used to watch (tapes of) those games when I was a kid," Brown said. "My dad is my ultimate idol."

When he watches those games he focuses on the guy who entered this season ranked as Nebraska's 10th-leading (yardage) all-time receiver, nine spots behind Heisman Trophy winner Johnny Rodgers. From 1980-82 Todd Brown had 65 receptions for 12 touchdowns and 1,092 yards, then played in the Canadian Football League. In high school, he was the first triple-jumper in Nebraska to surpass 50 feet.

To hear Micah tell it, his father was not only fast but tough, though not the toughest member of his family. That honor belongs to his twin sister Ashley, the KU record-holder in the 100-meter hurdles and 400-meter hurdles.

"She's probably the toughest person I've ever met," Micah said. "She was hurt all the time. She has had some serious injuries with her back, a nerve thing with her shins. She was in a wheelchair for two months. She had some serious stuff going on and she just rehabbed and came back, rehabbed and came back, rehabbed and came back. Pretty unbelievable."

Ashley graduated and is married, living and working in St. Louis and Micah is looking forward to a football game in a way he never quite has looked forward to anything. He was in uniform two years ago when Kansas lost to the Cornhuskers in overtime.

"It's an absolute dream come true," Brown said. "I was standing on the sideline the last time we were there, wishing I could get in for just one play. The atmosphere there is great and being a kid, looking out there onto the field, you always want to be playing on it. I played in the Shrine Bowl there my senior year and that was fun, but it wasn't the same. It wasn't packed and it wasn't really of any great significance."

Brown, a walk-on who earned a scholarship for this his senior year, is a regular on the kickoff and punt return units and plays some on the punt team. He trails his father by 64 receptions, but made his one catch count. It came in the Orange Bowl on a fake punt, a 22-yard pass from Brandon McAnderson.

Micah does a little bit of everything at KU. He even helps recruit students. Jordan Gill, daughter of Turner, Todd Brown's close friend and former quarterback and now the football coach at the University of Buffalo, is a freshman and member of the Rock Chalk Dancers. Micah gave her a tour of the campus on her recruiting visit.

They both grew up wearing red.

"If you look in a Nebraskan's closet it's red, red, red, red," Brown said. "That's how diehard they are. The main thing is their crowd is intense, but they're all really polite. They're not jerks. They'll cheer you on for making good plays. Now, they want the Huskers to win, but they want to see a good football game."

Something tells me they'll see a good one Saturday.

Comments

bmcmich1 10 years, 11 months ago

Loooong before I was even a gleam in my daddy's eye, that's for sure!Pretty good assessment on the NU home fan vs road fan differences, tx, that's pretty much what I would guess too.

10 years, 11 months ago

bmcmich1 ~ I have had the exact same experience with the 'Husker fans. My guess is the ones at the games in Lincoln have been going to the games for a while, they are used to winning, and know how to do so with class. The NU fans that used to come to the games in Lawrence when tickets were much easier to come by were probably those who can't get tickets to the games in Lincoln, probably never went to the university there, and are your typical bandwagon fans who tend to embarrass the school they are cheering for with their boorish behavior.By the way, when was the last time we were favored in a football game in Lincoln??

10 years, 11 months ago

You got it, bmcmich1!Mmmm...beer in schooners :o)I have been to Kincades several times - - outstanding establishment. I hung out there with some friends prior to our football game the following day at Notre Dame. Another cool place KU alum used to meet was the Alumni Club out in Schaumburg.Man, I know what you mean about bad mojo. There were a couple of places when I lived in KC that I couldn't return to due to bad hoops losses.Thanks, and enjoy the game!

bmcmich1 10 years, 11 months ago

Good article and a pretty fair assessment of the NU faithful in Lincoln by Micah. I have mixed feelings about the Nebraska fans that travel, as they seemed pretty obnoxious to me as a kid going to KU games where they'd often outnumber those in blue. They would heckle and taunt to no end, and it really got under my skin. However, I got the chance to attend a KU-NU game up in Lincoln during the TA era -- naturally, we got killed, but the NU fans were nothing but courteous and friendly; more along the lines of what Micah described in the article.I have no idea what caused the difference between NU fans in Lincoln and the NU fans that traveled to Larry, but I saw a huge difference in class. May just be me though...In any event, the 'hawks are coming into Nebraska this year with the best chance they've had to win in decades. I trust they will come in prepared and pick up a W that hasn't come for the program in many many years. Can't wait!!!

William James 10 years, 11 months ago

txrockchalk-I havent seen ya since August. Planing on making it to any of the next 2 games or the howdown?

10 years, 11 months ago

Hah! I was born in 1967, and I think it must have been well before that too!Are you going to be able to find a KU watch site in ChiTown to catch the game Saturday? A fellow KU fan who lives up in that area tells me Lottie's is a great place to watch the Jayhawk games.http://www.lottiespub.com/I am hoping one of the three DFW watch sites has it on, otherwise I will have to purchase it at home.

bmcmich1 10 years, 11 months ago

Thanks tx!Yeah, Lotties is a great place -- they serve beer in schooners like they do at Louise's and Louise's West in Larrytown!however there is another KU bar up here closer to me called Kincades, I plan to watch there. Plus, I was at Lotties for the South Fla debacle, bad mojo :)If those places don't have the game, I too will have to purchase it at home so I appreciate the link to PPV info.Hope you find a joint in D/FW, Rock Chalk!

10 years, 11 months ago

Outstanding! Tell J_D to be sure and remember his game ticket ;)

10 years, 11 months ago

Hey fabio! I will be back for the Border War. Will you, J_D, and sevenyear be arriving for that one when the parking lots open??

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