A Rant, For Northwestern

David Banks-USA TODAY Sports

Writing this is probably a bad idea

Writing this is probably a bad idea.

Hi, I'm a Northwestern fan. I hope you all burn in hell.

Or, instead, let's have your team's best QB and best RB lost to injury. Oh yeah, and let's also have your best DT lost to injury too. Just because injuring two great offensive players wasn't difficult enough.

Northwestern lost 20-17 today to Minnesota.  Minnesota played a great game. There was no fluke, no bad calls, no lucky break that the Golden Gophers got. (In fact, Northwestern were the beneficiary of a dubious 4th down defensive pass interference against Minnesota in the 4th quarter.) Minnesota played better, and deserved to win. Hat tip to the Gophers. Seriously, if anyone says Northwestern "deserved" to win, they're morons. Minny played well, and got a win they deserved.

Northwestern, meanwhile, played terribly, awfully, abysmally on offense. (The defense? Actually decent....they gave up on 13 points to Minnesota, and some of those the result of the offense giving up bad field position. If NU's defense allows only 13 points, NU should win. Period.) Oh, and that offense? It lacked the two best players on the team in Kain Colter and Venric Mark.

Look, Northwestern has disappointed. Northwestern's 4-3 (0-3) -- a crushing disappointment based on expectations.

Oh, those expectations? Yeah, they were based on Venric Mark and Kain Colter being healthy. Which hasn't happened. And here we are.

Injuries happen in football. They suck. They suck when they happen to your team, they suck when they happen to opposing teams. They especially suck when the injured players are seniors who have played JUST ENOUGH to not likely be lucky enough to get a redshirt.

Why am I writing this? Because somewhere (surely on the vile swarm of commenters on Rivals, definitely in the wretched hive of commenters on Lake the Posts, and even in corners of Sippin' On Purple) there are Northwestern fans saying our team is failing because of coaching, or because we're choking, or because we can't handle expectations, or because Northwestern will always be bad.

Fuck you with a goddamn cactus, you weak-ass son of a bitch.

Northwestern has played basically one game with Venric Mark and Kain Colter -- the INDISPUTABLE TWO BEST PLAYERS ON THE TEAM -- healthy, and that was against Ohio State, when the Cats took a team that has never lost under Urban Meyer to the goddamn brink.

I'm angry because our team isn't healthy. I'm angry because a season full of hope has been derailed because of those injuries.  I'm angry because our depth (while improving), is still not QUITE there enough to carry us through those injuries to get wins against other good/great/decent teams (although, I'll say it again -- WHAT TEAM COULD SURVIVE THEIR TWO BEST PLAYERS ON THE SAME SIDE OF THE BALL BEING INJURED?) I'm angry because without Kain Colter and Venric Mark, we don't appear to have a Plan B on offense (here's an idea -- throw to the flats with WR screens. Constantly. And then more passes over the middle....in essence, run the old Mike Kafka offense.)

I love this team, but I'm sick of injuries. And I'm sick of fans shitting all over our coaches and our program when we happen to play badly because of injuries.  I'm sick of opposing fans celebrating in our losses. (Seriously? Get fucked. And then have both of your best players get hurt. Then get fucked again.)  I know other programs have injuries too....and injuries are part of football....but have some damn perspective. Realize that the NU offense that was on the field today (and, frankly, the NU offense on the field against Cal, and Wisconsin, and even pretty much every game BUT the OSU game) was/is NOT the team that NU thought it would have out there. Our program is improving, but we're hurt now, and that sucks, and we're losing because of it.  And, frankly, if we're not healthy, NU's not winning another game this year.  Seriously. I don't see another win. (Illinois? It's on the road. Ditto Iowa. And every other potential opponent is basically a B1G Legends' contender)

Have some goddamn pride, Northwestern fans. We're down, we're certainly out of contention for the Legends title. We should be, and deserve to be, underdogs in every game we play from now on out. (And I offer my own mea culpa in that regard - we're nowhere near as good as I thought we would be, but AGAIN WE HAVEN'T HAD KAIN COLTER AND VENRIC MARK ON THE FIELD TOGETHER).

But we have 5 games left (hopefully 6). We can ruin some seasons of our rivals. We can start to get guys ready for 2014. And we can send Kain and Venric (hopefully, eventually, healthy) out with victory (against Illinois, because seriously screw those guys, or hopefully in a middling bowl that we make).

Keep the faith, Go Cats. And get healthy. So we can bring the schadenfreude to every other team remaining on our schedule.

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