Turner Gill, Irving Fryar, Roger Craig, Tom Osborne. Such names make Nebraska football fans, which is to say all Nebraskans, think back to the glory days.
For Kansas University special teams player Micah Brown, they mean more. They're family friends. Micah's father, Todd, played for Osborne and with Gill, Fryar and Craig.
"We used to watch (tapes of) those games when I was a kid," Brown said. "My dad is my ultimate idol."
When he watches those games he focuses on the guy who entered this season ranked as Nebraska's 10th-leading (yardage) all-time receiver, nine spots behind Heisman Trophy winner Johnny Rodgers. From 1980-82 Todd Brown had 65 receptions for 12 touchdowns and 1,092 yards, then played in the Canadian Football League. In high school, he was the first triple-jumper in Nebraska to surpass 50 feet.
To hear Micah tell it, his father was not only fast but tough, though not the toughest member of his family. That honor belongs to his twin sister Ashley, the KU record-holder in the 100-meter hurdles and 400-meter hurdles.
"She's probably the toughest person I've ever met," Micah said. "She was hurt all the time. She has had some serious injuries with her back, a nerve thing with her shins. She was in a wheelchair for two months. She had some serious stuff going on and she just rehabbed and came back, rehabbed and came back, rehabbed and came back. Pretty unbelievable."
Ashley graduated and is married, living and working in St. Louis and Micah is looking forward to a football game in a way he never quite has looked forward to anything. He was in uniform two years ago when Kansas lost to the Cornhuskers in overtime.
"It's an absolute dream come true," Brown said. "I was standing on the sideline the last time we were there, wishing I could get in for just one play. The atmosphere there is great and being a kid, looking out there onto the field, you always want to be playing on it. I played in the Shrine Bowl there my senior year and that was fun, but it wasn't the same. It wasn't packed and it wasn't really of any great significance."
Brown, a walk-on who earned a scholarship for this his senior year, is a regular on the kickoff and punt return units and plays some on the punt team. He trails his father by 64 receptions, but made his one catch count. It came in the Orange Bowl on a fake punt, a 22-yard pass from Brandon McAnderson.
Micah does a little bit of everything at KU. He even helps recruit students. Jordan Gill, daughter of Turner, Todd Brown's close friend and former quarterback and now the football coach at the University of Buffalo, is a freshman and member of the Rock Chalk Dancers. Micah gave her a tour of the campus on her recruiting visit.
They both grew up wearing red.
"If you look in a Nebraskan's closet it's red, red, red, red," Brown said. "That's how diehard they are. The main thing is their crowd is intense, but they're all really polite. They're not jerks. They'll cheer you on for making good plays. Now, they want the Huskers to win, but they want to see a good football game."
Something tells me they'll see a good one Saturday.