With all the struggles Matt Oâ??Hanlon has endured en route to becoming a starter on this year’s squad, I doubt he saw ever this comingâ??a feature article in today’s New York Times that praises his path to prime time.
â??I knew that I wanted to be a Cornhusker since I was 6 years old, and I saw those guys in red running through the tunnel,â? he said. â??I knew after a few days in South Dakota that I wasnâ??t ready to give up my dream.â?
Oâ??Hanlon is hardly alone. When Nebraska (3-1) takes on No. 4 Missouri (4-0) here Saturday night, he will be one of four starters who once were walk-ons. The Huskers will have walk-ons playing special teams as well, and Pelini, in his first season as head coach, has guaranteed that they will play a prominent part of Nebraska football for years to come.
Because a kid from Nebraska will take your head off.
Peterson, a three-time Big 12 academic all-American, said, â??Sometimes you get hit by a scout team player, and youâ??re like: â??Chill out, Rudy,â?? â? referring to the Rudy Ruettiger, the Notre Dame walk-on who was the subject of the movie â??Rudy.â? â??Then you remember, hey, that was me a couple years ago,â? said Peterson, who was on a partial academic scholarship until the athletic department picked up the balance after his sophomore season.