clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

ERASE THIS GAME: NEBRASKA-KANSAS 2007

New, 1152 comments

MEET BILL CALLAHAN, THE WORST CONSTRUCTION CONTRACTOR IN THE WORLD

Bruce Thorson-USA TODAY Sports

My favorite Bill Callahan story is the one where he led the Raiders to an AFC title, found out he'd be facing former Oakland coach Jon Gruden and the NFC Champion Tampa Bay Bucs, decided not to change his audibles even though he was using the same system Gruden had overseen, and then watched his offense throw five picks, take five sacks, and give up three defensive touchdowns as the Bucs won by 27.

The major drawback to this story is that it may not be even slightly true. The nice thing about that drawback is that it shows you how willingly we believe that Bill Callahan is completely inept.

My second favorite Bill Callahan story is that he is responsible for the worst defensive showing in Nebraska history, and he did it by letting score Kansas score 76 points in 2007. (To be fair, this was the best Kansas team ever, with the best Kansas quarterback ever. Todd Reesing threw 90 touchdown passes as a Jayhawk, the career record. Quarterbacks two, three, and four on that list threw 104 combined.)

And, like any good tragedy, it begins perfectly peacefully.

This is very nearly the Platonic ideal of a three-and-out. It is also the only punt Nebraska forces in the entire game. Let's look at the results of every other third down play for the Kansas offense on this day:

- 13 yard touchdown pass
- 15 yard completion
- 4 yard run
- 2 yard run
- 13 yard touchdown pass
- 4 yard run
- 4 yard run
- 7 yard touchdown pass
- 10 yard run
- 6 yard run
- 7 yard pass
- Incomplete 
- 6 yard run
- Kneeldown

Excluding that kneel, you are looking at a 12 for 14 day. 12/14 is reasonable as a score on a Sporcle quiz about Titanic's Oscar nominations, not a third down conversion rate. Can't believe you missed Best Makeup, Kansas. No disrespect, but Victor Garber's not looking that smooth without help.

Say, let's see one of those third downs in action.

Give Bill Callahan this: when he destroys your once-proud program, he has the decency to be thorough about it. The defensive line? He knocked down most of the load-bearing beams so it'd collapse under the slightest pressure. Linebackers? Got so much water damage they'll slide right off if you breathe on them wrong. Secondary? That roof's made out of recalled shingles and good luck calling the Better Business Bureau when you find out. Bill Callahan Construction LLC dissolved last week and the phone number he gave you is no longer in service.

This wheel route should be a Smithsonian museum. Not IN a Smithsonian museum; we construct a new building dedicated solely to this wheel route. "Have you tried the 3-D Simulator at the Museum of The Most Perfect Wheel Route? It's ten dollars and I'd pay five times that much."

Other things happened on November 10th, 2007, things people might remember more, or with greater clarity. Ohio State lost to a Ron Zook Illinois team. Miami lost their last game at the decrepit Orange Bowl by a score of 48-0. A Boston College team ranked eighth lost 42-35 to Maryland. Boston College, if they had won, would have been number one or number two, because 2007 was the devil's roulette wheel and Les Miles was playing with three balls at once.

But this: this was a noon-thirty game, mostly because Nebraska was already tanking badly. Coming into this game, the Huskers had lost four straight, including the 41-6 act of offensive pornography by Mizzou committed at Faurot Field. That Nebraska was pure ass was a recognized quantity, but this was hard to shake out of your head, even twelve hours later after watching the end of the Fresno State/Hawaii game.

You knew there was going to be ass, but dammit, Nebraska didn't remember ordering a flatbed of ass. Someone's dumping this whole truckload of ass in the driveway, and Bill Callahan is out there saying whoa, buddy, that's more ass than one football team can make in a game, way, way more than we ordered. We're never gonna be able to dig our way out of this small Alp of ass-ness you've dumped in the driveway, Bill Callahan. That's 76 points. That's more ass than we could have expected, and this Nebraska team ALMOST LOST TO BALL STATE AT HOME.

Wait Bill did you check the order? Did you count them as pallets or individual orders of ass, because--

Dammit they're pallets. It says right here on the work order.

Bill Callahan you are the worst construction contractor ever. EVER.