“Between this guy, Richie Incognito, Dominic Raiola, Alfonzo Dennard, and probably a lot of others who escape me at the moment, Nebraska sure knows how to keep it classy.”

The heartland! The heartland! It doesn’t get more all-American than Nebraska – a state that, along with Missouri, UD (an evil coastal Jew married to Euro-trash) routinely forgets exists.

My headline quotes a commenter on an article about Lawrence Phillips, the latest proud son of that state’s university’s storied football team. Now that Phillips has murdered his cellmate, the University of Nebraska enjoys the same spate of publicity it did when its beloved Richie Incognito ran into some trouble.

The article’s a bit vague on the wonderful Nebraska coaching that brought Phillips to that school and kept him there –

Phillips was a superstar running back at Nebraska who was controversially allowed to keep playing for the Cornhuskers even after multiple run-ins with the law.

– but here’s a detail from another source:

[Coach Tom] Osborne reinstated Phillips in the same season the star dragged his girlfriend by the hair down a staircase.

Same sex marriage in Nebraska? Goodness me, no! But drag your girlfriend down the staircase by the hair and … instant football star!

And talk about coacha inconsolata. Get a load of the headline on an article about Osborne:

Lawrence Phillips Tragedy Continues to Haunt Former Nebraska Coach

Wow.

When asked about keeping Phillips on the team, the coach recently said that as a coach

“You take hits.”

Hit me again! That’s it, hit me again! What do I expect? I’m a coach! I can take it…

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UD thanks the many readers who sent her updates about Phillips’ amazing career, and the totally amazing University of Nebraska.

University of Nebraska: Spending Big to Find the Next Richie Incognito

When it comes to bringing people like Richie to campus, cost is no object.

More on the University of Nebraska, Academic Home of Richie Incognito

New to teaching, I was proudly gazing at a sign on my office door proclaiming “Assistant Professor Grossman,” when the department secretary knocked.

“Would you like seasons tickets for the faculty cheering section in the football stadium?” she asked.

“No thank you,” I said, effectively ending my social life at the University of Nebraska. I didn’t realize it wasn’t a question but an imperative. Faculty members were expected to wear sweaters with the school colors and hold up colored pieces of cardboard to spell out, in giant letters, eternal verities like: “Hold That Line!”

Ron Grossman, Chicago Tribune

Details of student Richie Incognito’s educational history at the University of Nebraska.

My, my. The University of Nebraska. Don’t let your kid go to school there. Dangerous. Nebraska’s very keen on violent people. Will keep them on until they charge the school’s football coach.

When he wasn’t suited up, he was still getting into brawls — found guilty of misdemeanor assault in after “one of those parties in a Van Wilder movie” in February 2004, a former [Nebraska] student told The Post.

“I had to use the bathroom, and I knocked, and heard there were two people in there — and they weren’t happy I was knocking,” recalled the former student.

“I waited, and then suddenly, out comes Richie and his girlfriend. He was irate.”

Eventually, Incognito, like an uncaged beast, “tried to pin me on the bed,” as Cornhusker pals joined in, he continued. “I felt something hit me on the side of my face and my head went into a wall — it was Richie taking a cheap shot. “At that point he was threatening to kill me.”

The 6-foot-3, 320-pound lineman — who was punching holes in the walls when he couldn’t find a chin — finally left the party, but not before cold-cocking a poor sap who happened to be standing by the door. “He took his cell phone, threw it, and then punched him on his way out,” the former student said.

Incognito was set to play his junior year for new coach Bill Callahan, but was unceremoniously suspended from the nationally ranked squad, a move thought to be precipitated by the February brawl.

The Daily Nebraskan, the school newspaper, applauded the news…

“He was one of the worst people I ever interacted with,” [a student] told The Post. “It was just so extreme and unrelenting. There was no sense that he learned from anything when he got in trouble.”

[The student] said he nearly came to blows with Incognito …

“We were both in line at Wendy’s and he was standing over me . . . staring at me, ” he recalled. “He eventually just grunted and walked away.”

Officially, Callahan said at the time, “We have team rules. They’re very simple to follow. If they’re not followed, and they’re not complied to, then (you) suffer the consequences, unfortunately.”

But a former student told The Post the reason he heard from “inside the locker room” was that Incognito “tried to charge Bill Callahan.”

Callahan could not be reached for comment.

Meanwhile, the Incognito family made excuses for their son.

“Richie won’t take crap from anyone. He’s a hard-nosed kid, and Nebraska doesn’t want hard-nosed kids anymore,” his father told the Lincoln Journal Star.

**************************************

The article ends with an extremely weird statement from one of Incognito’s friends.

“He got kicked out of two universities. Guys like that don’t make it in the NFL. They usually float off to oblivion.”

Uh, getting kicked out of a university – or, more typically, flunking out – is the royal road to the NFL. Don’t know what this guy is thinking.

Gruden/Incognito Cosmic Convergence!

[Consider] the Raiders’ decision in 2018 at [Jon] Gruden’s behest to sign Richie Incognito, a player known to have a past of bullying, racism, and homophobia. Gruden would go on to call Incognito a “leader on this football team” when he was signed to an extension in 2019.

Yeah well people all over are unloading on the self-email-outed-ex-coach of the Las Vegas Raiders, but who knew these two steroidal psychos were on the same team? UD didn’t know, and UD‘s been blogging about batshit Incognito since his intellectual sojourn at the University of Nebraska.

[Gruden] found space on his roster for Richie Incognito, a confirmed bully who was suspended for intimidating a Black former Dolphins teammate with racial slurs.

It warms the cockles of her heart to know Gruden and Incognito were… together… at the end…

She sees them embrace in a manly farewell, and hears Incognito’s final words to his bro — “And now nothing remains for me but to assure you in the most animated language of the violence of my affection.”

*******************

AWKward. Defenders of Gruden are falling all over themselves to point out the double standard of happily allowing squads of criminals and maniacs (see above) into the NFL but booting out a guy who writes disgusting emails. Dudes have a point, but in making the point they are offering the world a high-profile, complete list of all the dangerous shits who Americans worship because they play football. Not sure Gruden’s defenders want to publicize precisely how deep that problem goes. Might make people want to do something about it.

This blog has been watching Richie Incognito go off the rails since his glory days at …

… Nebraska, which just loved him, and which still loves him. Like Johnny Manziel, Richie was lionized during his college years even though everyone could see he was all fucked up.

Jock schools can’t get enough of broad-shouldered psychotics cuz they make the best plays, and these schools are certainly not in the business of noticing that their hotly-recruited wrecks are sick in the head and in need of help.

And then it’s on to the pros for these shambling bohemoths, for more fun basket-case-voyeurism. We’ve even got Richie’s latest paranoid attack and collapse on tape.

University of Nebraska: You’re Only as Old as Your Last DUI.

It’s been real, following the University of Nebraska on this blog. This proud enabler of Lawrence Phillips, Richie Incognito and a host of other great players has its own system for figuring out a person’s age: Three years per DUI. So in keeping his recruitment coach in the program after the man’s third DUI, Nebraska’s AD notes that the 45-year old is after all “a young man” with his whole life before him. So 45 in DUI years means that the guy is actually only fifteen years old.

In helping to put this guy back on the road to his fourth DUI, Nebraska’s AD showed the sensitivity and moral clarity for which this university has become famous.

“[We knew] we weren’t going to make everybody happy, especially those who have been uniquely affected by that sort of behavior. So we respect that and appreciate that.”

Yes, those of you paralyzed for life or, you know, bereft of a child because of people who drive drunk – you have certainly been uniquely affected! And we can all totally understand and appreciate that you might have an exaggerated reaction to this sort of thing because of your unfortunate personal experiences…

If you’ve taken an antiemetic in the last hour or so, feel free to put Nebraska in my search engine to review the history of this wasteland.

***************

UD thanks John.

As Johnny Manziel Goes the Richie Incognito Route, Remember His Greatest Enabler: The Chancellor of Texas A&M.

Both Richie and Johnny were obvious wrecks during their college years, but at Incognito’s University of Nebraska and Manziel’s A&M, keeping them on the field was far more important than noticing that their mental health was shot. Not only was everything bad they did fine, just fine; John Sharp, one of many washed-out politicians who run universities in Texas and Oklahoma, babbled incessantly to the press about Manziel’s adorable perfectness. He was “innocent” of all the wrongdoing of which he was accused. “My mother wishes I was as nice a kid as Johnny when I was a sophomore in college,” Sharp told a newspaper.

Manziel’s the kind of alcoholic no one could miss, but Sharp missed it, or didn’t care.

Yet what’s most important in this is Sharp’s leadership skills. As head of the university, he established for the entire community the proper attitude, the proper emotion, the proper language, to bring to their quarterback. Sharp modeled a paternal gruff humor, an indulgent folksy tolerance that turned into outraged attacks on the press for reporting the things Manziel did.

So now Manziel has really imploded — not that this means he won’t be picked up by another football team, of course, but he has certainly imploded…

And after all much of the fun of watching NFL games is watching players get fucked up six ways to Sunday on and off the field: concussions, domestic violence, on-field fights, bar fights… Something in us loves fucked up athletes and loves to witness and contemplate the things they do that finally get them locked up. Right now there’s the insanely hyped OJ Simpson tv series.

It is a story that could tell us, on a smaller scale, why O.J. Simpson was the way he was, and what happens when a young man is venerated for his strength and power, and never has to learn how to do anything else.

It fails to tell us any of that.

But we can learn something by looking at the presidents and chancellors of our universities, people like Penn State’s Graham Spanier and Texas A&M’s John Sharp. They lead their university communities in venerating players – and of course sometimes coaches – whose darkness turns out to have been there for anyone to see.

Dave Zirin on Lawrence Phillips and the University of Nebraska

[H]is early run-ins with the law, instead of provoking interventions by the football coaches who comprised the adult authority figures in his life, only brought cover-ups, aimed to protect their golden goose: a kid who coaches and who, scouts said in hushed tones, ran the ball like a future MVP. In listening to a series of interviews with old teammates, you hear stories of violence conjoined with mental illness: of someone who “didn’t have all the tools in his tool box,” who could turn from kindness to anger on a moment’s notice, lash out, and then be consumed with regret. This was someone who needed counseling. Instead, he had people just hoping he would win the big game before his next arrest.

That took place most notoriously at Nebraska, where Phillips dragged his ex-girlfriend, Kate McEwen, a basketball player, down a flight of stairs. After pleading “no contest” to charges of misdemeanor assault, he was suspended for just six games. As for McEwen, she had her athletic scholarship taken away. An abhorrent message had been sent to not only Phillips but to a team that collected gender-violence charges like they collected conference titles.

Phillips’s coach, the legendary Tom Osborne, said at the time that he took Phillips back onto the team without further punishment because the young man needed “structure” and stability that only Cornhuskers football could offer. That “structure” was a college football program that, like so many others, was built on rank exploitation, with little care for the person under the helmet.

It’s even more insidious than that, isn’t it? Is it that hard to imagine a coach perceiving the twisted violence in a player, perceiving it play out astonishingly against women, perceiving the very same quality playing out against men on the field, and saying: Wow. Great. Let’s tap the football part of that violence… We only need it for a few seasons… Responsible people at the University of Nebraska must have known that wildchild Richie Incognito had a pretty empty toolbox too. I’m sure there have been plenty of other similarly exploited student athletes on that campus. Why hasn’t anyone at that campus proposed a serious investigation, conducted by an outsider, of its coaching and academic ethics over, say, the last two decades, in regard to its football players? I know that plenty of other universities behave the same way, but given the current spotlight on Nebraska, I think that school would be a good place to start.

************

A similarly harsh attack on the University of Nebraska.

“[The University of] Nebraska’s moving in on a record the NCAA doesn’t recognize: Number of murderers produced by a football program. Right now, it’s only one, but it’s trending three.”

Of course it’s not just murderers; for decades, Nebraska has produced manifold themes and variations on Richie Incognito.

What UD finds especially amazing is that whatever you do, the University of Nebraska will continue to celebrate you on its webpages. Look up anyone: Incognito, Povendo, Phillips, Thunder Collins… They’re all still there, worshipped as gods on the Huskers site.

With the Waco biker shootout on everyone’s mind, Nick Povendo’s a particularly interesting Nebraska product. He was actually Incognito’s backup on the University of Nebraska team! But he has now surpassed him. Povendo graduated to criminal biker gang stuff – the same stuff that shot up Waco. He’ll be on trial for murder soon.

UD asks: Why isn’t everyone talking about the University of Nebraska football team? Why aren’t we having a national discussion about what’s wrong with the state of Nebraska?

Ay Nebraska Nebraska!

Sing it to this tune: Ay Romania, Romania…

Ay! Nebraska, Nebraska, Nebraska —
Once there was a land, sweet and lovely.
Ay! Nebraska, Nebraska, Nebraska —
Once there was a school, sweet and fine.
To go there is a pleasure;
What your heart desires you can get:

Raiola,

Pelini,

Incognito,

Pelini’s $7.7 million buyout, aha … !

***************

UPDATE: Good stewards of public money in so many ways.

Keep in Mind that Incognito was Just as Disgusting…

… at the University of Nebraska, where he continues to be lionized online. You’d think that university would rouse itself to remove their we love richie page – not only because he was a vile bully while at Nebraska, but because he’s now an international object of contempt. (They let him play there for two years before – under the pressure of his incredible behavior – letting him go. But if you Google his name and the word Nebraska, you find that the university cannot bring itself to take down his official hagiography.)

(A walk down memory lane with Nebraska’s “little puppy” and his similarly “intense” fellow Husker, Dominic Raiola.)

And here’s Richie today:

It’s tempting to say something far-reaching and wide-ranging about The Game and how its structure and mores retard human development. It’s tempting to indict the league and the Dolphins for continuing a tradition of slipshod treatment of mental-health issues through their lack of follow-up after [Jonathan] Martin was treated for depression last spring. It’s more than tempting to take one last run at excoriating Incognito for his seemingly sociopathic behavior and its ability to flow seamlessly through the daily routines of NFL life.

… Incognito was the “team” guy, right? Member of the Leadership Council, bell cow for the offensive line, self-appointed hardener of the soft, he comes across in the report as a terribly divisive man whose bizarre and disgusting behavior cost the team a starting offensive lineman and subjected it to a phenomenal amount of unwanted scrutiny.

… [Jonathan] Martin’s feelings of inadequacy seemed to stem in large part from his academic success. An upper-middle-class black man with a run of good schools in his background, he was looked upon skeptically, as someone who might commit the unforgivable offense (in Incognito’s world) of having more than one thought running through his head at any given time. Martin wrote, “I mostly blame the soft schools I went to, which fostered within me a feeling that I’m a huge p—y, as I never got into fights.”

Martin’s upbringing stifled him, rendered him speechless amid the hypersexual, hypervulgar, hyperracial world of the Dolphins’ locker room, and it underscored a point worth considering: Education is not always a valued commodity in the NFL. It can be looked upon with derision, as a sign that its owner lacks a certain desperation needed to succeed. Martin might be the first person to express shame at having a Stanford education.

Nebraska will never truly repudiate its Jim Jones, the Dolphins “team guy” who brought to a university everything that “retards human development.”

As this professor quickly discovered, Nebraska, like Sandusky’s Penn State, is a cult. It continues its masochistic worship of mad sons of bitches. It is a university dedicated to blitzing the capacity to think.

Only in America.

University of Nebraska: Shining Academic Star of the American Heartland…

… where Richie Incognito spent two years as a university student.

Every powerhouse recruited him. His old man wanted him to go to Miami, but Junior felt at home during his visit to Nebraska. “I don’t want to go anyplace else,” he told his father. “There is nothing to do there. It’s just football.

LOL.

************************

‘Course, they’re way past Incognito problems now.

************************

Oh, why be coy:

Incognito was suspended (twice) at Nebraska, and you know it’s not easy to get suspended at Nebraska, where character-building coach Tom Osborne let a cornerback play while awaiting trial for second-degree murder. Osborne also retained a defensive lineman who was arrested eight times, convicted four times, and left the heartland accused of multiple sexual assaults, before his induction into Nebraska’s Hall of Fame in 2006. Not to mention Nebraska’s current leader of young men, Bo Pelini, who is still apologizing for an epic carpet-bombing of F-words, an attempt to say exactly what he thought of Nebraska’s fans.

… The Incognito rap sheet includes a note that his peers voted him the NFL’s second-dirtiest player. No. 1 in a Sporting News poll last year was another Nebraska worthy, Ndamukong Suh.

************************

All of which confirms for the millionth time that if you want true surreality, the really actually deeply bizarre, you don’t go to America’s big cities. As David Lynch knows so well, if you seek America at its most scarily twisted, head for the rural heartland.

Terror Incognito

Passed from hand to loving hand because he’s a violent psycho built like a brick shithouse … Passed from the University of Nebraska to the University of Oregon and then to the Rams and the Dolphins, the rich and celebrated football player Richie Incognito will be back on the field in a flash on some other team, as soon as he works his way through his latest dust-up; and the only reason the Dolphins are a mite nervous about this latest incident is that along the way it reveals that a lot of the other guys on the Dolphins team are … well… not certifiable, but in every other way strikingly similar to Richie.

Here’s how a Miami sports writer puts it:

This puts bullying on the NFL radar, at least. It forces the league to understand that it must be worried about more than just the concussion-related safety of its players or their arrests for stuff like DUIs or domestic abuse.

Yes, UD likes the way this guy puts it. Looks as though the NFL is going to have to start worrying about “not just” the concussion, DUI, and domestic abuse thing (yawn). Because le sujet du jour is bullying – regular old garden variety locker room bullying, as well as the incredibly well-compensated bats-in-the-belfry brutality of Incognito.

****************************

“Richie is … this seems to be a person with a tortured soul.”

Brace yourself for the Offensive-Linesman-as-Dostoevsky defense.

Brace yourself for the televangelist who will train Incognito to look like this on camera.

Brace yourself.

Further Adventures in Basket-Case-Voyeurism

Just hours before Richie Incognito, a violent paranoid wreck with a long history of mental illness, was hauled off to the hospital, this Vikings fan wrote:

[S]igning Incognito at least gives the Vikings more options at figuring out the best offensive line combination for next season… [H]e has seemingly turned a corner for the better

Sho nuff. That’s what they said of Richie way back when he attended the University of Nebraska, and then during his … brief scholarship run at the University of Oregon.

Incognito fell into [a] mind-numbing pattern of offensive behavior, always washed away by the fact that someone was willing to ignore his troubles because he could physically handle himself on the football field. He’s been identified as a menace, suspended and dismissed. He’s been kicked out of games for fighting, accused of being dirty, and now, exposed as an apparent bully who shook down a younger teammate for $15,000 in milk money.

Universities and professional teams have been all over this profoundly damaged man for years and years and years, excited by the vicious bullying that is his sickness and their field advantage. Surely after Richie’s latest incarceration and observation for dangerous insanity he will be picked up by a team once again, and we can once again enjoy the spectacle of this volcano of a man erupting all over a town near you, as local reporter/boosters and coaching staff assure us he’s turned a corner.

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