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By Randy York
Fans who would enjoy hearing the second leading scorer in Nebraska football history and a linebacker coach who recently added recruiting and special teams coordinator titles to his coaching resume, have until 5 p.m. Friday to make a luncheon reservation.
Kris Brown, who went on to have a dream career in the NFL, and second-year Husker assistant coach Ross Els are the featured speakers for the Huskers Athletic Fund (HAF) Luncheon on Thursday, March 1, beginning at 11:30 a.m. at Lincoln's downtown Embassy Suites Hotel. Tickets cost $23 each, and a table of 10 can be reserved for $220. To order tickets, visit www.huskers.com/donate or call the HAF Office at (402) 472-2367.
Brown should be an interesting speaker. Even though he was a recruit from Southlake, Texas, he has great respect for Husker walk-on players. Last year, he was thrilled when walk-on kicker Alex Henery overtook his No. 1 place atop NU's career scoring chart. "Walk-ons are the lifeblood of Nebraska's program, and I love to see them back in the big picture," Brown said. "I still pinch myself knowing I got to play for the best college football program in the country, and we all know why it's always been different and better than anyone else - because of all those walk-ons who are inspired to play at Nebraska. They're the heart-and-soul of the program."
A Lincoln native and son of a high school football coach, Els is in his second season on the Nebraska staff. In his first season, he was the position coach for Lavonte David, who was named Big Ten Conference Linebacker of the Year and a first-team All-American. Fellow Husker linebacker Will Compton was the second leading tackler behind David. Together, the two combined for 215 tackles, including 20 that resulted in lost yardage. Els also played a prominent role in recruiting four new linebackers in Nebraska's 2012 class, and all four - Jared Afalava, Zaire Anderson, Thomas Brown and Michael Rose fit the mold Nebraska was seeking.
The Friday, April 6 HAF event will be the third and final 2011-12 Walk-On Club Luncheon of the season, sponsored by Taste Traditions of Omaha. The program features Nebraska Strength and Conditioning Coach James Dobson, NU Wide Receivers Coach Rich Fisher and first-team Husker All-American Henery, who converted 24 of his 27 field goal attempts in his rookie season with the Philadelphia Eagles. Henery was the Eagles' fourth-round draft choice.
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