LINCOLN, Neb. -- Stormy weather and grey skies put a damper on Nebraska's Red-White spring game on Saturday. As dedicated fans started pouring into the stadium, athletic director Tom Osborne announced over the video board the game had indeed been called due to threatening weather in the area.
"It wasn't a decision that we made lightly," Osborne said. "If you have someone get hurt badly or hit by lightning, then you probably saved yourself a lot of grief and personal injury and all those kinds of things. We made the best decision we could based on the information we had."
Fans were treated to an autograph session after Nebraska officials called the game
Boos echoed through Memorial Stadium, but the fans that showed up didn’t go home empty handed. Osborne announced that everyone who attended would get free pizza from the concession stands.
While most fans would have traded a slice of pie for a glimpse of next year’s Nebraska squad, head coach Bo Pelini stands behind the decision not to play.
“What are you going to do?” he asked. “I think the right decision was made. You’ve got to make a rational decision.”
Gloomy weather loomed over Lincoln all day, but nearly and hour before kickoff, things took a turn for the worse. Rain, hail, lightning, and severe weather watches all played a part in the cancellation of the game.
“It’s disappointing,” Pelini said. “It’s disappointing for the players. We all look forward to this day and it’s disappointing for the fans."
As the crowd left the stadium, they hoped the game would be rescheduled – possibly as early as Sunday. But Pelini pointed out that the process was not that easy. The decision was made to not even hold another practice, in place of the one cancelled today.
"It's not going to make or break us one way or the other," Pelini said. ''I don't want to disrupt everything we have scheduled and planned heading into the next phase of our offseason for one practice. And to be honest with you, you worry about the mindset of your players at that point: How much are you going to get out of them?"
But with every setback comes an opportunity. For Nebraska, the opportunity comes in the form of recruiting.
According to defensive coordinator John Papuchis, it gives the coaches “an opportunity to spend more time with the recruits.”
Here is the list of recruits in town this weekend, as reported by Big Red Report:
4-star quarterback Aaron Bailey - offer
*** Big Red Report Publisher Josh Harvey contributed to this report ***
4-star safety Marcus McWilson - commit
4-star defensive end A.J. Natter - offer
4-star defensive end Joe Mathis - offer
4-star defensive end Naim Mustafaa - offer
3-star running back Terrell Newby - offer
3-star linebacker Josh Banderas - offer
3-star running back Jerel Morrow - offer
3-star linebacker Courtney Love - offer
3-star tight end Trent Gow - prospect
Jordan Sterns - Texas Tech commit
J.C. Reid has worked for Big Red Report magazine and BigRedReport.com since December of 2011. He is currently a junior at UNL, studying Journalism.