By Randy York
Had a chance to see the four-minute video that will be played Saturday when 55 members of Nebraska’s 1971 national championship team are honored at halftime of the Nebraska-Chattanooga season-opener. Trust me, once you see this video produced by HuskerVision, you’ll want to watch it more than once. The music, the clothes, the smiles, the highlights and the history climb right off the screen and into your heart.
That historic Husker team will help form part of the tunnel during Nebraska’s traditional Tunnel Walk entrance onto the field. The video will be shown to Nebraska’s 312th consecutive sellout crowd at halftime. The ’71 video will be unveiled at Friday nights’ banquet honoring the team at the Champions Club. Huskers.com will post the video at halftime, so fans can feel the same adrenaline that will take this team, coaches and staff back 40 years this weekend.
Your N-Sider Blog is publishing the official 1971 team photo. We can’t name everyone, but the front row, from left, includes coaches Carl Selmer, Warren Powers, Bob Devaney, Cletus Fischer, Mike Corgan, Tom Osborne, Monte Kiffin, Bill “Thunder” Thornton, John Melton, Jim Ross and Jim Walden. What an unbelievable staff that was! In case you’re wondering, the last person in that first row is Roger Long, an assistant physical therapist. The team’s captains are Jerry Tagge (far left, row 6) and Jim Anderson (far left, row 8).
Players confirmed to attend the banquet are Dan Anderson, Jim Anderson, Frosty Anderson, Alan Austin, Mike Beran, Joe Blahak, Randy Borg, James Branch, Van Brownson, Randy Butts, James Carstens, Woody Cox Jr., Maury Damkroger, Gary Dixon, Mark Doak, Doug Dumler, Dave Goeller, Gary Hollstein, Pat Fischer, Willie Harper (banquet only), Jeff Hughes, John Hyland, Larry Jacobson, Bill Janssen, Carl Johnson, Doug Johnson, Jeff Kinney, John Kinsel, Bill Kosch, Brent Longwell, Wes Mabin, Steve Manstedt, Dave Mason, Jeff Moran, Michael O’Holleran, John Peterson, Johnny Pitts, Tom Robison, Johnny Rodgers, Terry Rogers, Steve Runty, Dick Rupert, Richard Sanger, Bill Sloey, Terry Starkebaum (game only), Jon Strong, Jerry Tagge, Bob Terrio, Bob Thornton, Bruce Weber, Daryl White, Steve Wieser, Bob Wolfe, Keith Wortman and Dennis Zanrosso. Nancy O’Connell and Cheryl Hauge are attending the reunion in honor of their late husbands, John O’Connell and Bruce Hauge.
Coaches and staff attending are Roger Brestel, Don Bryant, Boyd Epley, Dick James, John Melton, Tom Osborne, Carl Selmer, Bill Shepard and George Sullivan. Eight members of the ’71 team are deceased, including Ron Coleman, Glen Garson, Phil Harvey, Joe Henderson, Jerry List and Ralph Powell. Deceased coaches from that team are Bob Devaney, Mike Corgan, Cletus Fischer and Jim Ross. The late Bill Thornton, Nebraska’s first-ever African-American captain, was a graduate assistant in 1971. The late Paul Schneider was an athletic trainer.
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