A Nebraska home football tradition will not take place in the Cornhuskers’ 2022 season. Nebraska AD Trev Alberts has announced that fans will not receive red balls at Memorial Stadium this fall to release after the first touchdown.
Alberts shared the news on his monthly radio show. Sam McKewon of the Omaha World-Herald notes that the tradition had been criticized on environmental grounds. The University of Nebraska-Lincoln student government voted to end the tradition in November last year, although the student government vote did not have a binding effect on NU’s decision. Alberts shared that it’s a production issue.
“Some of the production on this one is really contested, and it’s hard to get,” Alberts said on Husker Sports Radio, by mckewon. “So the university asked us – the helium that we get as a university, we have to use for medical purposes at UNMC in Omaha. And so this year we’re not going to provide red balloons.
The Nebraska DA noted that some helium production takes place in Russia. Global sanctions have limited the country’s exports.
According to McKewon, Alberts said the school was working “really hard” on alternatives. Digital representation of balloons on video panels was mentioned as a possibility.
Nebraska opens the 2022 season against Northwestern in Dublin, Ireland. The Huskers’ home opener is scheduled for Sept. 3 against North Dakota.