Mickey Joseph

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Mickey Joseph
College Nebraska
Conference Big Eight
Sport Football
Position QB
Jersey # 2
Career 1988–1991
Height 5 ft 10 in (1.78 m)
Weight 175 lb (79 kg)
Nationality USA
Born (1968-03-05) March 5, 1968 (age 47)
Bowl games

Mickey Joseph (born March 5, 1968) is a former American football quarterback that started for the University of Nebraska.[1] He led his team to a 9-2 regular season record as a junior in his only season as the team's starting signal caller in 1990 under the direction of head coach Dr. Tom Osborne. He served as the Head Football Coach at Langston University for two seasons.[2]

Collegiate career[edit]

Mickey Joseph played quarterback for the Nebraska Cornhuskers. The native of Marrero, Louisiana started off his career as a capable backup playing behind starters' Steve Taylor and Gerry Gdowski for his freshman and sophomore years. He took over the team as the starter in a two quarterback system with teammate Mike Grant during Joseph's junior year in 1990.

That season, Joseph got Nebraska off to a perfect 8-0-0 record as expectations in Lincoln, Nebraska were building up off a No. 3 ranking from the AP Poll. The next game came on November 3, 1990 as Nebraska faced nationally ranked No. 1 Colorado. With 2:38 left in the third quarter of this contest, Joseph connected with his tight end Johnnie Mitchell on a 48-yard touchdown pass to give the Huskers a 12-0 lead. However, Colorado surged ahead by scoring 27 unanswered fourth quarter points to win the game, 27-12.[3]

Joseph's team finished 9-2 for the regular season, but the regular season finale on November 23, 1990 proved to be costly as the dual threat quarterback suffered a season-ending injury by breaking his leg early in the first quarter of the game with the Oklahoma Sooners in Norman, Oklahoma. Without Joseph, this Nebraska team would never be the same as Oklahoma won, 45-10, and the Huskers would go on to struggle in post season play.[4]

For the 1990 season, Joseph's team finished at 9-3 and ranked No. 24 nationally after its Citrus Bowl loss to co-national champion Georgia Tech, 45-21, on January 1, 1991.[5] The 5-foot-10, 175-pound Joseph had cat-like quickness and ran the triple option as an option quarterback. He led Nebraska in passing yards with 624 and completed 34-of-78 passes with 11 touchdowns and six interceptions in 11 games as a junior. He also ran a tailback predicated option offense that included three I-backs—Leodis Flowers, Scott Baldwin, and Derek Brown—that combined for nearly 2,000 rushing yards. Joseph rushed 91 times for 554 yards including 10 touchdowns and recorded a longest run of 70 yards.[6]

Joseph's best single game passing performance came on November 10, 1990 at Kansas in a 41-9 win over the Jayhawks where he completed 7-of-16 passes for 164 yards and threw touchdown passes of 35 and 28 yards to his tight end, Mitchell. Joseph also had 10 rushes for 58 yards.[7]

The Husker signal caller's finest single game rushing performance came on October 27, 1990 in a 45-27 blasting of Iowa State at Ames, Iowa. Joseph rushed for 123 yards on eight carries and went 4-for-4 passing the ball for 67 yards that included touchdown passes to Mitchell of 23 and three yards.[8]

Joseph's most productive offensive performance in a single game came on October 13, 1990 in a 69-21 win over Missouri when he accounted for five touchdowns. Joseph had nine rushes for 95 yards and was 4-for-8 passing the ball for 65 yards that included a 10 yard scoring pass to split end Jon Bostick. Joseph also scored on touchdown runs of 15, five, two, and three yards in the contest with the Tigers.[9]

Joseph finished his career at Nebraska the same way it began. He fell down the depth chart after returning from the leg injury for his senior season as Keithen McCant became the Huskers' starting quarterback. McCant would go on to win the 1991 Big Eight Offensive Player of the Year Award. For the 1991 season, Joseph passed for 200 yards off 15-of-30 attempts with a touchdown in 11 games. He rushed 26 times for 112 yards and recorded two touchdowns in limited playing time.[10]


Passing Rushing
1988 2 4 50.0 16 0 2 24 218 9.1 3
1989 4 12 33.3 69 2 0 39 224 5.7 1
1990 34 78 43.6 624 11 6 91 554 6.1 10
1991 15 30 50.0 200 1 0 26 112 4.3 2
Totals 55 124 44.4 909 14 8 180 1,108 6.2 16

Coaching and teaching career[edit]

After suffering the leg injury at the tail end of his junior season at Nebraska, Joseph had to forgo the idea of chasing the dream of playing quarterback in the Canadian Football League where, at 5-foot-10 inches tall and mobile, his skillset was best suited to perform the task. Instead, Joseph graduated from Nebraska in 1991 and pursued a teaching and coaching career.

Joseph coached at colleges and then took a job in his hometown as a seventh-grade history teacher and gym teacher at Desire Street Academy. This was an all-boys school located in one of the poorest neighborhoods that is in the Ninth Ward of New Orleans, Louisiana. Joseph was their teacher and football coach. Then in late August 2005, Joseph's school suffered badly from the flooding and other damage caused by Hurricane Katrina forcing Desire Street Academy to relocate some four hours east of New Orleans to a 4-H camp which is located along the Choctawhatchee Bay in Florida.[1]

It was then that Joseph took on a surrogate fatherlike role as he was able to round up 75 of his students from Louisiana and relocate them to the 4-H camp in Florida. This program known as "Florida 4-H Youth Development" was led by former Heisman Trophy winner and Washington Redskins' quarterback, Danny Wuerffel. There, Joseph took care of his students, survivors of Hurricane Katrina, by serving as their dorm resident. "I'm a dorm dad," commented Joseph. "Actually, they say I'm the dorm grandpa, because I'm a supervisor of the dorm dads." Joseph mentored the children who were separated from their families during this period of tribulation in the fall of 2005.[1]

For Joseph, his role was expanded as he found more and more of his time being spent with his displaced students. He made certain they were all in bed by 10:00 pm and was still their teacher as classroom responsibilities fell upon him early in the day. He also had a football team formed from his available student body that finished with a record of 2-1 that fall. When he was interviewed in November 2005, Joseph explained of the harsh realities his children had experienced of how they were traumatized in some way. He explained that some had stayed at the New Orleans Superdome for days. Joseph summarized his students' lives by saying, "They showed a lot of courage to just come here and continue their education, but they're really out of their environment. And I'm going to teach them now living with them. So I've been really able to find out a lot of things about them." Then Joseph added, "I'm literally raising them. So some days are good. Some days are bad ... but there's never a day where you say, 'I want to quit.'"[1]

Personal life[edit]

Joseph was the Head Football Coach at Langston University.[2] Joseph had coached as an assistant coach for the Lions.


  1. ^ a b c d Kenney, Colleen (November 20, 2005). "Former Husker QB plays surrogate father". Lincoln Journal Star (Lincoln, Nebraska). Retrieved 3 August 2012. 
  2. ^ a b Stewart, Michael (June 7, 2011). "LU names Mickey Joseph as Interm Head Football Coach". LangstonSports.com. Retrieved 4 August 2012. 
  3. ^ "Colorado 27, Nebraska 12". HuskerMax.com. November 3, 1990. Retrieved 1 August 2012. 
  4. ^ "Oklahoma 45, Nebraska 10". HuskerMax.com. November 23, 1990. Retrieved 7 August 2012. 
  5. ^ "Georgia Tech 45, Nebraska 21". HuskerMax.com. January 1, 1991. Retrieved 7 August 2012. 
  6. ^ "1990 Nebraska football statistics". HuskerMax.com. January 1991. Retrieved 7 August 2012. 
  7. ^ "Nebraska 41, Kansas 9". HuskerMax.com. November 10, 1990. Retrieved 7 August 2012. 
  8. ^ "Nebraska 45, Iowa State 27". HuskerMax.com. October 27, 1990. Retrieved 7 August 2012. 
  9. ^ "Nebraska 69, Missouri 21". HuskerMax.com. October 13, 1990. Retrieved 7 August 2012. 
  10. ^ "1991 Nebraska football statistics". HuskerMax.com. January 1992. Retrieved 7 August 2012. 

Additional sources[edit]

  • huskerpedia.com/stats/stats_1988.html
  • huskerpedia.com/stats/stats_1989.html
  • huskerpedia.com/stats/stats_1990.html
  • huskerpedia.com/stats/stats_1991.html