Vintage Red | Nebraska Stories | NET Nebraska

Vintage Red | Nebraska Stories | NET Nebraska


music) JC WICKSTROM:
I basically get all my
stuff straight from the players. I love the fact that
these guys come in here, that they call just to chat. It’s surreal to think that
all my heroes when I was a kid like just wanna
call and talk to me. It’s just the
strangest thing still. NARRATOR: Hidden in
Lincoln’s Hay Market is a gallery dedicated
to Nebraska football. Its curator, JC Wickstrom, has been a sports
memorabilia collector since he was small child. JC: The first time I remember
that Nebraska football was a big deal was
the ’78 Oklahoma game. So, I was seven years old and I realized that it was
gonna be a big part of my life. In ’83, the University had
their first like garage sale. I was like pulling
stuff out of piles, like this is Jeff
Kinny’s jersey from 1970 and you know Larry Jacobson. And I’m like you gotta, and
of course my mom was like, “Who’s Jeff Kinny?” And I was like ahh! (upbeat music) JC: Who knows why anybody
picks something to get passionate
about and collect but that was it for me. I mean I never
wanted anything else. I had purchased
basically everything Ameer Abdullah had sold. This third party saw it
and wanted to buy it. He kept on increasing his
offer and increasing his offer. And I was just like I
don’t care what you offer, you can’t have it. So, we got to talking and it turned out this
guy was the president of one of the
largest privately-owned
museums in the world. He put some money in there and that’s how this
place got started. I mean it’s kind of a miracle. There really wasn’t a
very big market for it until about 2000. There were very few
of us out there, a couple of us,
doing Nebraska stuff. It just exploded. You know stuff you can
get for $50, $100 bucks costs $1,000 now. NARRATOR: While
JC has purchased some of his collection
from auctions, most of it comes straight from
former players themselves. BRENDEN STAI:
They reached out to me. And I think like he does
to a lot of former players, you know, told me about
what he’s been doing, his collection, and in
his interest in trying to get the pipeline
noticed through his museum. (upbeat music) JC: I actually had a
list of like 17 guys that I had since I
was in high school. And I thought those
guys were unattainable. And then like two years
ago, I finished the list. That’s the fun for me, is the hunt you know, the tracking something down. It’s an addiction. I can’t, I won’t stop. I mean just, I love it. I mean I love it
so much so it’s, everybody’s got their thing. So mine just happens
to be expensive. This is the shirt
from McGee’s Clothiers that was signed by
the entire 1933 team. It’s something
that’s very unusual. The best thing is ’cause
the autographs back then, they actually signed their
names so you can read it. It’s just such a
different piece. I absolutely had to have it. So that’s a pretty, something
you’re never gonna see. There’s only one
of those, for sure. The ’41 football, our first
Bowl team, the ’41 Rose Bowl, it’s the game ball signed
by the whole Nebraska team. Yeah it’s free. It’s for everybody to enjoy. And I do enjoy the reactions of people who are
big Husker fans. They just shake their head, they’re like how did
you get all this stuff? NARRATOR: Vintage
Red has become a place to honor the legacy
of Nebraska football, one piece at a time. JC: There’s so many great
players that have played here. All these guys have families and they wanna show
their loved ones that I was actually a part of this. BRENDEN: There’s a lot of
history in Nebraska football. And this museum, to me, is a great place for
people to come and reflect and you know honor. Also, I know over at the
university right now, there’s so much stuff that’s
just kind of collecting dust and in closets and I
think the ultimate goal would then to have
this great museum. And right now, I think that this is a perfect platform for it.

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