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  1. 2009 May 06

    To Booze or Not to Booze


    By HuskerLocker

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    That, now, is a question for Nebraska’s skybox owners, as NU athletic director Tom Osborne has promised a crackdown on the Huskers’ toniest fans, many of whom have indulged an alcoholic beverage or two – we’re thinking a tomato beer with a little salt drizzled around the rim of the glass – since the palatial estates opened back in 1999.

    “We had an individual who stopped breathing last year,” Osborne told The Lincoln Journal-Star. “(We) had to call the paramedics. It was an alcohol episode in one of our skyboxes, and that triggered the thought that this would not be good for the athletic department or the school if it appeared we were turning our heads on state law.”

    The University of Nebraska-Lincoln, you see, is a dry campus. Now, there are probably thousands of beer cans stashed all over campus by enterprising, sneaky college students, but the official rule is that, if you’re caught drinking alcohol within campus boundaries, you’re doing something wrong. Whether it’s worthy of punishment or not is debatable, but, well, you know, you’re not supposed to do it.

    Exceptions are made. A wedding reception at the Wick Alumni Center, for example. On Husker game days, the booze flows freely at the NU Champions Club across the street from Memorial Stadium, and, well, on the backseat of every flatbed truck being used as a mobile tailgating bar.

    The campus police aren’t skulking around like the cops out of “Minority Report.” Nobody’s trying to ruin the good time.

    And, surely, alcohol finds its way into the giant bowl of Memorial Stadium. Old folks tuck a flask in their coat. Students tuck just about anything where the sun don’t shine.

    Trust us: There’s more people getting blitzed in the stands than there is on the field. And trying to prevent any booze from getting in the stadium is more trouble than it is truly worth.

    But it won’t be as hard to track skybox owners, especially if Osborne takes strong measures to stop them from smuggling the alcohol into the suite days before the game. Osborne won’t be commanding room raids but, if he’s serious – and T.O. is kind of a serious guy on matters like this – enforcement outside the suits could be fairly significant.

    Where do you stand on the matter? Consider the options and give us your feedback?

    Should Osborne proceed as is?

    Should he understand that skybox owners have earned a few extra perks with their donations and push for a realistic change in the law?

    Should NU do away with its dry campus status? If so, do remember that Nebraska is one of the ten highest states in America for binge drinking, with a rate well above the national average. A wet campus means transferring at least half of the drinking that’s done downtown back to the campus, and all the potential problems that could go with it.

    What's your take, Husker fans?

    Tags: booze ban, tom osborne, football

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