Husker fans remember Foltz at first game of the season

Posted by: Abigail Wood

Today was the first game without Husker Punter Sam Foltz. Husker Nation rose to their feet to honor him Saturday night. Foltz died, along with Michigan State Punter Mike Sadler, in a car accident back in July.

Foltz’ family gathered outside at his memorial before going in to watch the game. 

"I think his spirit’s going to be in the stadium today," said his cousin, Matthew Stepanek. "I think his teammates are really going to try to work hard and take care of the game for him."

The Huskers ran on to the field in honor of Foltz. His two nephews, Lane and Max, lead the team out of the tunnel. Holding their hands was the first official recipient of the Sam Foltz Memorial scholarship–Kicker Drew Brown.

Despite the high spirits of game day, many fans were sobered by the hole Foltz leaves in Husker Nation.

"I’ve been to a lot of games over the years and watched Sam on multiple occasions," said fan Logan Soukup. "Not seeing him out there is going to hurt. But I know that everybody on the team is going to go out there and play the hardest for Sam."

They say they’re still excited for the season, but Memorial Stadium won’t be the same without his presence.

"It’s going to feel kind of different, because like I said he’s such a good punter," said Bill Nelson, who has been a Husker fan for 60 years now. "On the other hand, I think the impact he had on the other players, that’s the thing that’s going to be more important than really what happens on the first punt."

And here’s what happened on that first punt. The team lined up, but with only 10 of the 11 places. Foltz’ place, left empty.