Thousands of comments -- written, spoken, tweeted and facebooked -- followed Bo Pelini's postgame glare and challenges to writers Saturday after the Huskers completed their biggest comeback of all time.

Some feel Pelini is being a mean guy. Some believe he is genuinely unhappy because he is loyal to his team and can't believe everybody doesn't share his feelings.

The real truth is that Pelini is a media genius.

The fourth-year Husker coach knew that a bye week was coming up. The NU secondary will not be challenged this week. The play-calling will not be judged by outsiders and Matt Millen on TV.

Pelini knows we fill not only a daily newspaper cycle with plenty of Husker this and that and everything else. He understands we have blogs and videos and 24-hour sports talk radio and ESPN.

How much can you write about a bye? Maybe a little less than when the Huskers prepare for Minnesota, but, really, a bye? There's only so much Dan Beebe crud we can put up with. Texas is a mess and isn't sharing the Big 12 with NU any more.

So Bo took it upon himself to give all the news hawkers a chance to talk and write about something else. "Bo's Blasts," "Pelini's Protestations" will be cause for plenty of analysis and fill a couple of news cycles.

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The next subjects could be how Nebraska has been using left-handed footballs on offense in the first half and opaque coverings for the eye screens inside the helmets of defenders.

Other news outlets could fill in the blanks when Pelini asks reporters "What do you think?"

Tom Osborne never asked what we in the media thought. Bob Devaney told us what we should be thinking. Frank Solich and Bill Callahan really didn't seem to care what we thought. But Bo asks a couple of times a year, in response to a reporter's question, "What do you think? You saw the game."

Lately, some coaches seem to be so shortsighted, they simply answer the questions.

Former Lincoln Saltdogs manager Tim Johnson had two reactions ready for each game. After a loss, "They shoved it …" and "That's baseball." After a win, "We shoved it …" and "That's baseball."

Lee Elia, manager of the Cubs in the 1980s, may have said it best. On April 29, 1983, after a rare Cubs loss, Elia said he was disappointed with the lack of fan support. "--- those --- fans who come out here and say they're Cub fans that are supposed to be behind you rippin' every --- thing you do." "They outa go out and get a --- job and find out what it's like to go out and earn a --- living. Eighty-five percent of the --- world is working. The other 15 percent come out here. A --- playground for the ---." Later, "If you wanna rip somebody, rip my --- ---. But don't rip them ---- guys 'cause they're givin' everything they can give. And right now they're tryin' to do more than God gave ‘em, and that's why we make simple mistakes."

Reach Ken Hambleton at 402-473-7313 or khambleton@journalstar.com.


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