Redskins

Osborne leads Huskers out of tunnel before kickoff

201211171538563002956-p2.jpeg

Osborne leads Huskers out of tunnel before kickoff

LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) Nebraska coaching great Tom Osborne joined Bo Pelini in leading the Cornhuskers from the locker room onto the field for Saturday's game against Minnesota and was honored on the field at halftime.

The day at Memorial Stadium was designated as a ``Salute to Tom Osborne.'' The 75-year-old Osborne is retiring as athletic director on Jan. 1.

A video focusing on Osborne's coaching career preceded the traditional Tunnel Walk. Osborne, wearing a red windbreaker and ballcap, walked side by side with Pelini from the locker room to the tunnel opening in the northwest end zone. Pelini pumped his fist to the crowd as he and Osborne jogged onto the field ahead of the team to a standing ovation.

Before the Tunnel Walk, fans on the east side of the stadium held up cards spelling out ``Thanks Tom'' in white letters against a red background, then flipped them over to display the message ``Go Big Red'' in red letters against a white background.

At halftime Osborne, his wife Nancy and their family stood at midfield while a video tribute played on the big screen.

Big Ten Commissioner Jim Delany, Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, former Oklahoma coach Barry Switzer, Wisconsin athletic director Barry Alvarez and Kansas State coach Bill Snyder hailed Osborne for his character and leadership.

Osborne told fans in a video message that he has been fortunate to coach so many outstanding athletes and work with excellent coaches and staff members. He also lauded the fans for their financial support and sportsmanship.

``This is a special place unequaled in college athletics and all of you made it so,'' Osborne said. ``Nancy and I appreciate all of you and will leave with many great memories of autumn afternoons in this stadium.''

Osborne was not made available for interviews.

Osborne won 255 games, 13 conference championships and three national titles in a 25-year Hall-of-Fame coaching career that ended in 1997.

He retired from coaching after winning the 1997 national championship, served three terms in the U.S. House of Representatives and returned to the university as athletic director in 2007.

Osborne, who was a star athlete at tiny Hastings College in south-central Nebraska, played receiver for the Washington Redskins in 1960-61 and then joined Bob Devaney's staff at Nebraska as a graduate assistant.

Saturday's game was the 500th in which Osborne served in an official capacity for the university.

Osborne will turn over the athletic director's job to Shawn Eichorst on Jan. 1. Osborne will continue as athletic director emeritus until July 31, 2013.

Quick Links

New free agent Doug Martin unlikely fix to Redskins woeful run game

usatsi_10212645.jpg
USA TODAY Sports

New free agent Doug Martin unlikely fix to Redskins woeful run game

News broke that the Tampa Bay Bucaneers released former Pro Bowl running back Doug Martin, and while the name certainly triggers value, his play of the last two seasons should calm the excitement. 

Since a 2015 season where Martin rushed for 1,400 yards and averaged nearly 5 yards-per-carry in 16 games, Martin has been suspended, undergone substance abuse rehab and missed games due to injury.

In the last two seasons, Martin has played in 16 of 32 games, rushed for 827 yards and averaged less than 3 yards-per-carry. Over his six year NFL career with the Bucs, Martin has only played two full seasons. Those two seasons were great, in 2012 and 2015, but the other four have been largely disappointing. 

The Redskins averaged just 3.6 yards-per-carry last season, and could definitely use a boost in the run game. It's entirely possible Washington might look to upgrade their offensive backfield this offseason, either in free agency or the draft, but Martin does not look like the player to help. 

Early in the 2017 season, it appeared the Redskins run game might be a strength for the offense. After a disappointing effort on the ground to open the year in a loss to the Eagles, the Redskins rushed for at least 111 yards in their next three contests, including nearly 230 yards on the ground in a Week 2 win over the Rams. 

Injuries undid the run game, as Rob Kelley got hurt and the offensive line lost players too. Over the course of the season, rookie Samaje Perine sustained minor injuries and Chris Thompson was lost for the year with a broken leg. 

Going into 2018, Kelley, Perine, Thompson and Kapri Bibbs are all on the roster and expected for now to stay with the team.

Want more Redskins? Click here to follow JP on Facebook and check out @JPFinlayNBCS for live updates via Twitter! Click here for the #RedskinsTalk on Apple Podcastshere for Google Play or press play below. Don't forget to subscribe!

Quick Links

Michal Kempny excited to move from last place Chicago to first place Caps

capture_kempny.png
USA TODAY Sports

Michal Kempny excited to move from last place Chicago to first place Caps

On Sunday, Michal Kempny was a defenseman struggling for a spot in the lineup for a team poised to miss the playoffs for the first time since 2008. On Monday, he became potentially an important piece on the roster of the first place Capitals.

The last few days have been quite the whirlwind for Kempny who tallied an assist for Chicago on Saturday in a 7-1 blowout against what is now his current team. While the Blackhawks may have gotten the better of Washington that night, Kempny is excited about the postseason opportunity that now lies in front of him.

"Nobody knows what's happening in Chicago, but I'm really happy and I'm really glad that I can be here," Kempny told reporters on Tuesday after his first skate with the team. "There is option of play a playoff and I'm very happy for it."

RELATED: WHERE MICHAL KEMKPNY FITS IN THE CAPS' LINEUP

The 27-year-old Czech defenseman played only 31 games for the Blackhawks this season, but considering Washington's need to shore up its defense before the trade deadline and the team's willingness to give up a third-round pick to acquire him, it is likely he will have a much more significant role with the Caps.

"I thought that I [was] going to get more space on the ice and more ice time, but I didn't play more than half games," Kempny said of his decision to originally sign with Chicago. "But now I'm here and I'm really glad that I'm here. Washington is amazing city and great organization and I hope I will get a chance to access myself on the ice more than in Chicago."

Kempny will not play in Tuesday's game against the Tampa Bay Lightning, but did say he expects to play Thursday when the team visits the Florida Panthers.

When he does get into the lineup, it is unclear just how big a role he will play initially or how the team foresees utilizing him going forward. He is a left-shot defenseman and did tell reporters he prefers to play on that side. It seems unlikely the team would acquire him just to put him on his offside.

As of now, however, everything regarding his role in Washington is up on the air.

"I need everything settle down a little bit," he said. "New teammates, new people around here."

MORE CAPITALS: MEET MICHAL KEMPNY