The Sandman, Sex Trafficking and More

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By Randy York

Today, we go outside the N-Sider for the Week in Review, and then we’ll move back inside to let everyone know what they might have missed over the past seven days. Let’s begin with Mike Babcock’s “Recruiting Tales” and how it was nearly three decades ago when Tom Osborne was recruiting Broderick Thomas, a.k.a. “The Sandman” because when the Houston native tackled players in high school, he put them to sleep. Babcock went to his own vault from a 2006 interview with Thomas, a unanimous First-Team All-American at Nebraska and then a first-round draft choice at Tampa Bay. Thomas told Babcock that Osborne created such a buzz visiting his home that people lined up outside just to get a peek at Nebraska’s Hall-of-Fame coach. You’ll have to hit this link and read the rest of the story to find out why Thomas’ mom wanted to ship “The Sandman” straight to Lincoln after that memorable visit.

Somehow, the talkative Thomas must have played a part in the high level of interest surrounding Osborne’s home visit, and that leads me to a second “outside” story published last week in the Daily Nebraskan. Walking to the training table to lunch last Thursday, I was picking up a USA Today from the news racks when I noticed a familiar face staring at me from the front page of NU’s student newspaper. Under his picture is this headline: Associate athletic director Bob Burton calls human trafficking ‘man’s issue’. Writer Jacy Marmaduke led his front-page story with seven words – “Bob Burton wants to break your heart”. This is an N-Sider “must read” because it’s not only a story that deserves everyone’s attention, but also a classic case where one man decided to stop talking and start doing, founding his own faith-based organization that raises money to fight sex trafficking. Please take the time to read it and learn how I’ve got a name was born, right here in the Capital City of Nebraska.

Let’s finish with several N-Sider Blogs worth looking back: 1) how Rex Burkhead, Kaitlyn Burke and Chris Phipps are Husker role models taking a stand against bullying; 2) why Janet Smith, the Nebraska women’s all-time leading rebounder, marvels at the Huskers; 3) how two seniors, Lora Evanstad and Katelyn Busacker, met in a chance meeting last August and became teammates and friends on Nebraska’s women’s gymnastics team, the favorite to win a Big Ten title this weekend at Penn State; 4) why Dan Kendig believes Evanstad just might be Nebraska’s best female gymnast ever; 5) how three coaches in three important stages of her life helped make freshman basketball star Emily Cady built to be tough; 6) why a Jo Potuto lecture later this month is one that sports fans should be able to enjoy; and 7) how Connie Yori,  a former National Coach of the Year, can show immeasureable pride for an exceptional season despite getting upset last night by the school Nebraska has played more than any other school in women’s basketball history. Thanks for catching up, and thanks for supporting The N-Sider.

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