University of Nebraska-Lincoln Interim Athletic Director Tom Osborne received a standing ovation Friday morning at the Big Red Breakfast in Omaha.
Osborne took the helm of the athletic department Wednesday and immediately embarked on a program to soothe hurt feelings and calm anxieties.
He has alreadry stressed several times that the current coaching staff for the Husker football program has his full support and he restated that again Friday to the room full of Husker fans.
"Whatever I do will be what I think is in the best long-term interest of the program and I care about the coaches that are there now, the players that are there now," said Osborne.
The new A.D. warned the Big Red faithful that change in the program will not happen overnight. "It will take a little time. I don't think we're completely out of the buggy, but we maybe got some things that we need to get shored up, maybe we'll get it done, maybe we can't. We'll see."
What fans don't want to see in the last five games of the season are bad plays and team spirit that seems to be fading away.
With Osborne's experience and respect within the Husker community, many feel just having him on the job is a very important first step to turning the team around, even at mid-season.
"I'm happy about it and I think it's given everybody a feeling of hope that maybe we can get some changes made and some of our Nebraska traditions back that we seem to have lost," said fan Pat Johnson.
She and every Husker fan in the room believed Osborne is the missing link that will help.
"Two weeks ago it was pretty doom and gloom, but I think there's a lot of season left and we got a chance to rebound a little bit," said fan Brian Barry.
Osborne's appearance capped a week of enormous upheaval in the UNL Athletic Department that began Monday with the firing of former A.D. Steve Pederson.
All eyes now turn to the Husker's next opponent. Saturday's home game with Texas A&M begins at 1 p.m.