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Mailbag: The Big Ten as Cereals

December 20, 2016

Some weeks we get questions for the mailbag that are just so random that we can’t help but include and answer them. This week was one of those weeks and one of those questions was about the Big Ten and cereal. Of course that had to be answered. There were also holiday-themed questions and one about Rogue One (which is at the end, in case you are worried about spoilers). There were a couple of more serious questions too, but we couldn’t help but have a little holiday fun this week.

Brandon Vogel, Jacob Padilla, Jake Jensen and Erin Sorensen answer your questions in this week’s Hail Varsity mailbag.

Q: If you could associate a cereal with each B1G school, what would those cereals be? – J.E., Omaha, Neb.

ES: OK, here goes nothing…

  • Nebraska – Corn Flakes
  • Michigan – All-Bran
  • Iowa – Special K
  • Illinois – Kix
  • Indiana – Cream of Wheat
  • Purdue – Grape Nuts
  • Rutgers – Rice Krispies
  • Wisconsin – Frosted Mini-Wheats
  • Northwestern – Hot oatmeal (with fresh-cut fruit)
  • Ohio State – Captain Crunch Berries
  • Penn State – Frosted Flakes
  • Maryland – Trix
  • Michigan State – Honey Nut Cheerios
  • Minnesota – Golden Crisp


I’ll leave you to determine why each selection was made.

Q: How much can the Husker player bowl game per diem buy at a Nashville-area Waffle House? The whole menu? – R.J., Omaha, Neb.

BV: I don’t know how much the per diem is, but I’m just going to go with “most of it.” I do love Waffle House, forever. Serves a vital function is a readily accessible purveyor of cheap, greasy breakfasts.

Q: Best place for Husker fans to tailgate in Nashville? – J.D., Omaha, Neb.

BV: Talking traditional tailgating, because I’m not so sure that idea of tailgating may exist with this game. Like a lot of NFL stadiums, there’s not a ton in the immediate vicinity of Nissan Stadium aside from parking lots. You can certainly set up and do what you normally do there, but the nice thing about Nashville is that the stadium is just a short walk across the Cumberland River away from Broadway, which is where most of the fan activities are centered. I’m guessing most football fans will spend their pregame time there, then head over to the game. Also check out the Nashville Huskers page. They’ll likely have some events going on and have done a great job putting together some guides of things to do in Music City.

Q: Do you believe in the “senior curse” for NU football players? Seems the seniors get injured at critical times. – K.B., Omaha, Neb.

JP: No. Football is a violent sport. Players – seniors included – get hurt all the time. It’s just more memorable when the injuries come at those critical times.

ES: But if we’re being honest, there might be something in the water. Right?

Q: Best brand of pre-packaged hot chocolate? – S.

JJ: The one my mom made for me growing up and it has to have big marshmallows in it. The small ones melt together.

BV: I’ll go with Nestle simply because it’s the brand I encounter most often in hotel lobbies. I’m not afraid of bad coffee, though I will take better coffee if I can get it. One of my favorite hotel-coffee hacks is to take a packet of hot chocolate mix (usually on hand) and mix that with a full cup of coffee. It takes mediocre coffee and makes it somewhat enjoyable.

Q: Do you see Huskers nabbing the big fish they’re after or scrambling/settling to fill the class by signing day? – H., David City, Neb.

JP: Well, it sounds like they may or may not have already landed the biggest fish, but there are several others still out there. Joseph Lewis, Jamire Calvin, Deommodore Lenoir, Darnay Holmes, Chuck Filiaga, Greg Johnson and a few others that I’ve forgotten about are all still in play and the Huskers seem to be in good standing with all or most of them. If they strike out, they’re in trouble, but with so many highly regarded players in their sights, I’d have to believe they’ll get at least a couple of them. Jake would have a better feel for specifics than I do.

JJ: Foster Sarell is the biggest possible fish Nebraska can land and I really like the chances with him. After that, I believe Joseph Lewis, Jamire Calvin, Deommodore Lenoir and Greg Johnson will commit to NU in early January. Unfortunately, I don’t think Nebraska will be able to beat out Michigan for Filiaga and I think the Darnay ship sailed a couple months ago.

Q: Possibly the biggest issue presented to Husker Nation…Do you open presents on Christmas Eve or Christmas day? – 3.L.C.

JP: The way we handled it while I was growing up is we got to open one present on Christmas Eve and the rest on Christmas, so… both.

BV: We were in the both camp as well. Usually one gift on Christmas Eve — typically a video game so my brother and I would leave my parents alone — and then the rest in the morning.

JJ: My immediate family would open our family gifts Christmas morning. For extended family, we opened them when the family was able to get together, so usually the first Saturday after Christmas.

ES: Everything on Christmas.

Q: Does Tim Miles have to win an NCAA game in March to save his job? – B.

JP: My stance has been that he’ll get one more year unless the team hits rock bottom and quits on him. Asking him to win an NCAA Tournament game is setting an unrealistic and, frankly, unreachable goal. Losing to Gardner-Webb isn’t rock-bottom – they’ve lost a game like that three years in a row right now. What will determine Miles’ job security is how they respond. Big Ten play hasn’t even started yet; this could get better or it could get much worse.

JJ: I think he’ll get one more year unless the team quits on him.

Q: What’s the one Christmas gift you’re hoping for this year? – K.

JP: Elimination of my student debt.

JJ: The science teacher gig at Overton High School, or any high school that’s hiring. I’m certified now and I need work!

ES: I’m with Jacob on the student debt thing.

(Editor’s note: The following question and answer does not contain any major spoilers for Rogue One, but if you are worried regardless, stop reading now.)

Q: On a scale from 1 to the Red Panda halftime show how good is the new Star Wars film ‘Rogue One’ starring Felicity Jones. – C.H., Lincoln, Neb.

JJ: I watched it yesterday, and I’m thinking a 6 out of 10 is a fair rating.

>> Felicity Jones is OK, but I was hoping she would get a few more action scenes.

>> The Darth Vader parts were solid because it was simple.

>> The male lead was a bit of a buzzkill.

>> The creepy old guy that was the No. 3 person in the Empire behind Vader and Palpatine is back. He is an awesome bad guy. He deserves his own movie.

>> This movie’s droid was awesome. K290 is basically Sheldon Cooper if he was a robot. The Monk and his walking army buddy were awesome as well.

>> Major loss of points for the ending, in my opinion.

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