Drinking.  Football.  The two go together like Scorcese and mobsters.  Like Sheen and hookers. 

When blended, they can mix together and form the perfect gameday concoction, allowing us to allay modern societal taboos so that it’s socially acceptable for a grown man to shout “rip his head off” until his voice cracks like a 14-year-old boy. 

However, like most formulas, drinking on a game day can be twisted; used to create a type of combustion that can easily derail your day and have you waking up in a cell next to a homeless man named One Eyed Jake who smells like cough syrup and American Spirits.

Let me be the first to say: I hope your gameday drinking goes the way of the first example.  I hope you’re a chemist of the highest order and that you’re able to find a high-functioning alchemy that allows you to morph from timid, somber Clark Kent into a Kryptonian, bellowing mightily and helping your team feed off the energy of the best crowd in America.

If you’re like me, you’re not going to be able to attend the game on Saturday.  So you’ll be watching, and imbibing, from a distance.  Here’s something to help you enjoy yourself.  A little drinking game that I cooked up that should allow you to take part in the bacchanalia that is a Husker Football game, even if you’re firmly seated on your couch.

Take One Drink:

–  Anytime ESPN/ABC/Disney/The Galactic Empire or whomever is running the sporting TV world these days cuts to an overly rustic picture (*Author’s note: tractors in cornfields, driven by an aging obnoxiously-salt-of-the-earth elderly man in coveralls seems to be a favorite) that helps the public perception that Nebraskans do little other than attend Husker games in between raising barns together and churning butter.

–  The announcers mention the name Jake Locker.

–  Taylor Martinez goes Dr. Jekyll — scoring a long touchdown run where he blasts past everyone, looking like a Ferrari racing against a team full of riding lawnmowers or tossing a bomb that despite being Jonah-Hill-at-a-nude-beach-ugly, nets us a big gainer.

–  When Taylor Martinez goes Mr. Hyde — fumbling the ball whenever a defender sneezes on him, throwing the ball in what appears to be perfect form, for a shotputter, directly into a Husky’s waiting hands.

–  If anyone you’re with continuously demands the we “work the ball to Abdullah.”

–  If the announcers describe Washington RB Chris Polk as “bruising” or a “north and south runner.”

–  Alfonzo Dennard’s leg is mentioned.

–  A sideline cam gets a close-up of Bo Pelini looking prepared to committ first degree homicide.

–  The announcers mention a stat that shows that LaVonte David has somehow gotten 5 more tackles than the last time they showed it.

–  Jared Crick gets crashes through the line like he’s playing Red Rover against 4th graders and sacks the QB.

–  Anytime the announcers mention that we’ve played Washington entirely too much in the past two seasons.

Take Two Drinks

–  Whenever Jamal Turner catches the ball and you realize that you were holding your breath, waiting for him to pull some video game juke move that leaves a Washington defender snatching feebly at thin air like he just took a hit of peyote and is having visions of ghosts.

–  If Brett Maher gives you a “we might just make it through this” moment in the post-Alex Henery years.

–  If Burkhead sets up in the wildcat.  (*Author’s note: I’m hoping we drink to this one a lot)

–  If either announcer calls Memorial Stadium the Sea of Red.

–  If ABC/ESPN gives us a camera shot of the biggest blight on our University since Lawrence Phillips: Lil’ Red, a mascot so uncool that I find myself frequently wishing that his suit would deflate and reveal that Charles Manson is inside so a shocked and appalled crowd will decry his very existence.  Yeah, I hate Lil’ Red.

–  When anyone you’re with claims to want Barney Cotton fired.

–  When anyone you’re with wonders how anyone named “Barney” got hired to coach a position that is routinely referred to in war-like terminology such as “the trenches” and always has people pining for guys with “mean-streaks.”  Drink to irony, my friends.

Take Three Drinks

–  When Nebraska gets an interception.

–  If the Huskers get flagged for an idiotic penalty that brutally murders any momentum they were accruing.

–  Taylor Martinez gets into the open field and makes your jaw drop with his speed.

–  If you find yourself grimacing in “if-he-gets-up-limping-I’m-gonna-break-this-beer-bottle-over-my-skull” pain as Martinez takes off too early, gets stacked up by 3 defenders, and is summarily smashed to the turf under 700 pounds of man-meat.

–  If Brandon Kinnie miraculously gets open for the first time all year and Martinez miraculously throws a ball right on the money.

Chug It. . .Chug It. . .

–  If the Huskers win the game.

–  When the announcers show the low-lights of last year’s Holiday bowl.  (*Author’s note: Did you see that game?  Take another drink)

–  If the Huskers lose.

–  If you and your friends are mistaken for the violent Latino street gang the Nortenos.


  1. madhat says:

    I’m still tuning in… waiting for you to catch your breath and WRITE SOMETHING!

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