The ‘Cats lost a closer-than-expected battle in Wisconsin last week, but looked better…at least on defense. The offense, not so much.
Next up is a trip to Lincoln to take on Nebraska in another road B1G West matchup. The Huskers are sitting at 3-2, fresh off a beating at the hands of Ohio State. The Warriors are a bit split on who will take this contest, as well as which QB we’ll see in the game for the ‘Cats. On to the picks…
I said something last week about NU’s speed option on 4th and goal at the 1 being one of Mickey’s finest hours.
Then Saturday occurred. He and Fitz likely had more “finest hours” in that game than we’ll ever see again.
Our offense is historically bad. You think that’s an overstatement? What if I told you we were on pace to have the third worst passing efficiency in the 21st century…. and 2017 Army was one of the two teams that were worse? What if I told you that our total offensive efficiency is 129th out of 130 FBS teams? What if I told you that Hunter Johnson has the worst QBR in FBS? Sadly, I can tell you all of that. Because it’s all true at the moment.
Game Summary: Thankfully we aren’t playing either the Wisconsin or Michigan State defense this week. That said, Nebraska’s defense is actually much improved despite getting mauled by Ohio State last week (don’t worry… we get to do the same thing in a few weeks). Their offense has, surprisingly, been a bit of an issue. The Corn people are chalking this up to a young offensive line that can’t get out of its own way. Sound familiar?
Given all of that, I expect NU’s defense to keep the Cats in this one despite the complete lack of offense we’ll see. Unfortunately, Nebraska’s offense is likely to be more dangerous against our defense than Wisconsin’s. At the end of the day, they have a dynamic QB and that generally hurts us.
This one will be a slug fest until Nebraska finds a rhythm. Then, it’s over because we can’t score.
Game Score: Nebraska 24 – NU 13
Play of the Game: I’m going to go with Aidan “Atkinson” Smith taking the first offensive snap and completing a pass for positive yards (Mick threw it on first down?!?!?!).
Player to Watch: Paddy Fisher. He needs to contain Martinez.
Warrior to Watch: Paul. Why not?
Other Game to Watch: Oklahoma State at Texas Tech. Has anyone seen OK State’s running back, Chuba Hubbard? He has 900 yards in 4 games against FBS competition (that’s not counting OK State’s game against McNeese State). He ran for a smooth 296 last week against a ranked K State team. Big12 defenses or not… this kid deserves some attention. Look for him to tack on 250+ in this one.
The ‘Cats played a better game last week against Wisconsin in Madison, but still came away with a L. It’s becoming abundantly clear that our defense is good and our offense is bad. Our defense only gave up 10 points to the Badgers, whereas our offense gave up 14 and only scored 15.
Fitz and McCall made some very strange two point conversion calls which had me going apoplectic during the game, and even upon further explanation really just don’t make sense. I think it’s funny that Fitz is always touting that ‘stats are for losers’ but then said after the game that he could ‘teach a class on analytics’. Can’t have it both ways, bro.
Our offense is putrid, bad, stinky, horrible. Aidan “Atkinson” Smith came in and looked better than Hunter Johnson. The fan base has about had it with McCall, and good riddance. If someone at my office repeatedly turns in poor performance for 10+ years straight, do you know what happens? They don’t stick around. It’s absurd that a D1 football program (in an industry where job security is much lower than an average job) won’t subscribe to this same philosophy, but instead stubbornly leans on ‘loyalty’ and an F you attitude towards the fan base as rationale for not making changes. These guys are getting paid a lot of money. There have to be consequences for not performing, just as there are on the field when Hunter was benched for Aidan against MSU. You have to hold your coaching staff to the same standards that you hold your players.
Game Summary: Rant just about over, let’s focus on the game this week. I’ve had this game circled all offseason as a loss – Nebraska just seems like a horrible matchup for us. We typically perform poorly against mobile QBs. Not that Nebraska is good or anything – they were severely overrated going into the year. However, I think they’ll score just enough points in this game, and our offense, well, McCall. Enough said.
Game Score: NU 21 – Nebraska 24
Play of the Game: Aidan “Atkinson” Smith throws a screen pass to Drake Anderson for a TD.
Player to Watch: Bowser. Is he healthy?
Warrior to Watch: Paul, he’s got some Husker in his blood.
Other Game to Watch: Iowa – Michigan. Should be a good one.
Game Summary: Defense good. Offense bad.
Game Score: NU 13 – Nebraska 27
Play of the Game: Chuck kicks an extra point!
Player to Watch: Whoever the h*ck is at QB, in perpetuity
Warrior to Watch: Our resident Cornhusker, Huettner
Other Game to Watch: Ohio State – Michigan State. It’ll be interesting for a quarter before Ohio State pulls away.
I think InsideNU described our passing attack perfectly, “Not Great, Bob!”. That said, our defense is pretty, pretty, pretty good. Nebraska was ranked to start the season. So were we (at least in one poll). Both teams have been exposed as frauds. Who will prove to the the worse team? I’m going ‘Cats. Big Red, or perhaps ‘Lil Red, will be able to score just enough (which still isn’t that much) to pull out the win. Both fanbases will want to pull their eyes out by the end of the game.
Game Score: Nebraska 20 – NU 17
Play of the Game: We finally get a defensive score. Pick 6 from Paddington “Bear” Fisher.
Player to Watch: Bente Baekers from NU Field Hockey. She’s got 16 goals on the season for a top 5 program. She’s scored 1/2 as many points as our offense has against teams not named UNLV.
Warrior to Watch: Let’s go Hack. 3PM start, how will he respond? Will he be 4 ‘Claws deep by kickoff?
Other Game to Watch: Friday Night special UCF @ Cincy. Let’s go [Bear]cats!
Game Summary: Cats win a weird one. Aidan SMITTY Smith smiths a winner out of these cats.
Game Score: Cats 25 – Nebraska 23
Warrior to Watch: Sources say Hack may not even be awake for a 3pm kick.
Game Summary: Nebraska is trash. So is our offense. Battle of the Defenses commence. I likely won’t even be watching this game as I’ll be playing NYC tour guide for my wonderful mother this Saturday.
Game Score: NU 14 – NEB (NOT NU) 10
Play of the Game: 50 yard screen pass TD to Bowser (is he still injured? idk) due to a missed tackle.
Player to Watch: Paddington “Bear” Fisher. I’m with Andy on this. Should be ripe for a nice INT this game.
Warrior to Watch: HACK. Raab’s in town so bound to go wild.
Other Game to Watch: Browns on are MNF this week (2nd time this year already!) Let the winning streak continue!
Game Score: Nebraska 24 – NU 10
Play of the Game: 74 yard run for a guy by the name of Anderson – deja vu for the fan base.
Player to Watch: Hunter “Killer” Johnson – Can he make Mick look smart?
Warrior to Watch: Trent – T Bag is a movement
Other Game to Watch: Iowa v Michigan – I don’t think either of these teams will be ranked by season’s end.