Some good stuff to talk about today:
Thanks to Hallux for keeping us updated on the CU men's lacrosse team and their attempt to win a championship. They are currently in the Final Four against Michigan. For all your Colorado locals, the tournament resumes Friday at Dick's Sporting Goods Park. Tomorrow's round is free to all and the championship round is a nominal fee. The game against Michigan starts at 8:00pm MT Friday.
Terry Douglass of The Grand Island Independent in Nebraska offers up his first early prediction for the Huskers win/loss totals. He acknowledges this as being very "foolhardy" considering the season is still 100 days away. I for one can't put anything on paper yet for fear of being totally off base since their are still a ton of things to learn about the Buffs as well as many other teams in the Big 12. Oklahoma, Oklahoma State and Texas are probably the three teams that don't have a ton of things to question right now, although Oklahoma's offensive line is very inexperienced. Take a look at this article found via Tim Griffin showing Kansas and Oklahoma returning the two least amounts of starts on the offensive line. The Buffs check in at third to last with 48 total starts between our returners with 61 being the average. There is a pretty big correlation to offensive line experience and wins, we will have to see how that plays out. More on that later.
Back to the article. Of course, Douglass picked Nebraska to beat CU on the road. He had Nebraska losing to Baylor on the road, though. Yes it is early. Either way, a monkey could put wins and losses on a piece of paper. Douglass has the corn going 8 - 4 this year with a 6 - 1 start, but there are a few good bits of information in the article.
First, in talking about the Missouri game, he mentions that Nebraska returns the second fewest starters of any Big 12 team besides Mizzou:
The Tigers, who lost both coordinators and are the only team in the Big 12 to return fewer starters than the Huskers, might be vulnerable even in Columbia this year.
New quarterback, new wide receivers...returning the second fewest starters to fellow Buff opponent, the Missouri Tigers. Ndamukong Suh must be one hell of a player for all of this optimism. Baylor returns a whopping 20 starters (according to Tim Griffin, it is 18 offensive/defensive with two specialty guys making 20).
Also, Douglass isn't exactly naming Zac Lee the starter at quarterback or showing that much confidence in the overall situation.
Former Duke G Greg Paulus will be suiting up for the Syracuse Orange next year according to ESPN, which is the program that probably gives him the best chance to play. If you remember correctly, he visited Michigan and the beloved Huskers.
Tim Griffin of ESPN.com gives his Buffs' spring recap. I think he did a pretty good job. His spring answers were the defensive backfield, the offensive line and the running backs as positions that excelled in first session. His question marks were quarterback, defensive line and wide receiver. Pretty much nailed it. Like most people, he is unsure of the impact in changing offensive coordinators:
And the position (QB) is further scrambled after the departure of coordinator Mark Helfrich for Oregon after the spring. Eric Kiesau was hired quickly to replace him, but a new coach is involved with an uncertain mix of players. Not a good sign.
Yes, there is a little uneasiness but at the same time, it's not like Helfrich's offenses were lighting it up in Boulder. I like to think on the positive side during the offseason and to me, a little change of scenary will only benefit the Buffs.