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Husker preview 2012
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With a week and a day to go until the start of the Nebraska football season, here are some of my thoughts about how the team will do, why and whatís at stake here in 2012.

Before predicting games two tasks must be undertaken.

First, any fan allegiance has to be put aside, which is tough. I know, I am a native Nebraskan and lifelong Husker fan. Secondly, one needs to examine each phase of the game.

Offense

The offensive line has question marks and the camp defections/injuries donít help. Taylor Martinez hasnít been a very explosive runner dating back to his 2010 injury against Missouri and his passes tend to be inaccurate. The receivers havenít stepped up and the team will be counting on Rex Burkhead, maybe to a fault. The hope of Husker fans is that Martinez will be a two-way threat again, the line will step up and Martinez will burn defenses with more accurate passing.

Defense

This team hasnít got much pressure on the quarterback in any year of the Bo Pelini era. One defensive lineman made major plays in the first two years of Peliniís tenure, but the blitz schemes havenít been there. Last year was really bad. Defensive line depth dwindled and the Huskersí secondary was counted on to cover for long stretches. Nebraska will have to get after the quarterback this year and create turnovers in order to be successful.

Specials

This might be the bright spot of the team. We have a good return man in Ameer Abdullah and Brett Maher looks good on punts, kicks and place kicking. As long as the cover teams donít implode, the Huskers should have no worries in the specialist department.

Now the picks.

Nebraska plays a fairly easy non-conference schedule, although it would be easy to throw Southern Mississippi and UCLA into the toss-up category. Southern Miss had a very successful 2011 and the UCLA game is a road contest. The?Huskers should start 4-0 though.

Conference will be a tough road for Nebraska again. Itís hard to see the Huskers beating Wisconsin, Michigan or Ohio State. Throw in Michigan State too since Nebraska plays the Spartans on the road. Northwestern beat Nebraska last year and the Huskers must play the Wildcats at their place this year. Nebraska closes with a road game in Iowa City.

The best case scenario for Nebraska would probably have them going 5-3 in league. That would put the teamís overall record at 9-3 and have the Huskers sitting at home again on conference championship weekend.



With a week and a day to go until the start of the Nebraska football season, here are some of my thoughts about how the team will do, why and whatís at stake here in 2012.

Before predicting games two tasks must be undertaken.

First, any fan allegiance has to be put aside, which is tough. I know, I am a native Nebraskan and lifelong Husker fan. Secondly, one needs to examine each phase of the game.

Offense

The offensive line has question marks and the camp defections/injuries donít help. Taylor Martinez hasnít been a very explosive runner dating back to his 2010 injury against Missouri and his passes tend to be inaccurate. The receivers havenít stepped up and the team will be counting on Rex Burkhead, maybe to a fault. The hope of Husker fans is that Martinez will be a two-way threat again, the line will step up and Martinez will burn defenses with more accurate passing.

Defense

This team hasnít got much pressure on the quarterback in any year of the Bo Pelini era. One defensive lineman made major plays in the first two years of Peliniís tenure, but the blitz schemes havenít been there. Last year was really bad. Defensive line depth dwindled and the Huskersí secondary was counted on to cover for long stretches. Nebraska will have to get after the quarterback this year and create turnovers in order to be successful.

Specials

This might be the bright spot of the team. We have a good return man in Ameer Abdullah and Brett Maher looks good on punts, kicks and place kicking. As long as the cover teams donít implode, the Huskers should have no worries in the specialist department.

Now the picks.

Nebraska plays a fairly easy non-conference schedule, although it would be easy to throw Southern Mississippi and UCLA into the toss-up category. Southern Miss had a very successful 2011 and the UCLA game is a road contest. The?Huskers should start 4-0 though.

Conference will be a tough road for Nebraska again. Itís hard to see the Huskers beating Wisconsin, Michigan or Ohio State. Throw in Michigan State too since Nebraska plays the Spartans on the road. Northwestern beat Nebraska last year and the Huskers must play the Wildcats at their place this year. Nebraska closes with a road game in Iowa City.

The best case scenario for Nebraska would probably have them going 5-3 in league. That would put the teamís overall record at 9-3 and have the Huskers sitting at home again on conference championship weekend.

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