You feel that tingle in the air? The slight smell of manure wafting through Colorado? That’s right, it’s Nebraska week. The folks over at CornNation were nice enough to save us from researching and told us everything you need to know.
1. A lot has been made of the Nebraska offense only scoring 14 points, but they also weren’t on the field much. Did they struggle as much as it seemed?
Nate M: It starts with the snaps from the center position and it wasn’t good. Each position group tried to take on the blame, but it starts at the center position. Then when Martinez actually got the ball his eyes weren’t looking in the right direction. Then add that of our two running backs, one has a pending legal matter in another state and the other cannot appear to read a cut-back lane and instead thinks it’s best just to go in a straight line. Yes it was a struggle.
Mike: It wasn’t just Cam Jurgens, the center; the entire interior of the offensive line struggled. Some of it was inexperience, some of it was being surprised by a new scheme that South Alabama implemented, and some of it was just dropping a turd last week. That threw the entire offense out of whack.
Uglydog56: The center is the second most important player on the offense — a close second. And ours was a redshirt freshman who had never played the position in his life, and missed nearly all of fall camp to boot. Along with that, nobody was getting any push or opening any holes elsewhere, either. This is going to take awhile to fix.
2. Last year, Nebraska’s defensive line was large and in charge against CU. It looks like they’ve only added talent. Are they as proficient as they were last year?
Nate M: The game against Colorado last year, in regards to pressuring the quarterback, was a one-time thing. I don’t know if it was because of the Colorado offensive line or because Colorado didn’t have tape on this Nebraska squad. Regardless, Nebraska had a hard time the rest of the season pressuring the quarterback with their defensive line. Against South Alabama, the defensive coordinator put a lot of pressure on the quarterback by blitzing the corners and safeties. I don’t think the defensive line did very much. Khalili Davis got a sack, but other than that there was nothing from the defensive line in terms of getting to the quarterback.
Uglydog56: The defensive line is serviceable. I think there will be more pressure on the quarterback from the front seven than last year. They’re not elite, but solid.
Andy: They’re deep and expereinced but I’m not sure that translates to elite. Hopefully, proficient.
3. Is Wandale Robinson as scary to you as he is to me?
Nate M: Yes. It is scary to have a player that is that explosive and not being able to sustain drives.
Uglydog56: He has a lot of potential.
Andy: When he’s our most dangerous weapon right out of the gate? Let’s just say we’re very happy that [Purdue receiver] Rondale Moore is his workout buddy.
4. The defense struggled last year, especially against the pass. What has Nebraska done to correct that?
Nate M: Have a defensive back’s coach for more than one year in a row. It has been a long time that Nebraska can say that.
Andy: Oh, we made an adjustment. Just decided to pick shit off.
5. Who’s the player to watch on offense, sans Adrian Martinez?
Nate M: Cam Jurgens. He is a converted tight end. Where does he play now? Center. He didn’t play a single football game in his life at center before last week. Watch and see if he can actually give Martinez the ball. On a good note, JD Spielman and Wandale Robinson are fun to watch. When they get the ball.
Andy: The easy answers are JD Spielman and Wan’Dale. But I’m still convinced that Dedrick Mills will put some numbers up if we can hand him the ball without a set of DT arms wrapped around him as he takes a handoff.
6. Who’s the player to watch on defense, sans Mo Berry?
Nate M: JoJo Domann. He isn’t a starter yet (blackshirt), but the kid just gets into the game and makes plays. Also Colin Miller. In his time at Nebraska he has played defensive end, outside linebacker and now inside linebacker. I think he has finally found a home and he can fly to the ball.
Mike: Cam Taylor-Britt. He’s a backup defensive back who’s making a bid for more playing time.
Andy: It’s only one game but Colorado native Eric Lee has certainly put himself out there.
7. What’s your prediction for this game?
Nate M: Coach Frost said that the offensive ineptness is either a blip on the radar or a trend. Until I see differently, I am going to expect it to be a trend. I have Colorado winning by 10.
Andy: It’s college football so after looking like a steaming pile of Rottweiler dump last week, the Huskers will inexplicably cruise on the road this week.. NU 39 CU 28