People in Nebraska are insane about college football. This is not exactly breaking news. Cornhuskers fans are beyond obsessed; we’ve known that for awhile, but you don’t realize how obsessed until you have an exclusive with Taylor Martinez, QB1, four years running in Lincoln.
Last month, Nebraska Cornhuskers starting QB Taylor Martinez signed autographs at a Nebraska mall for about 90 minutes. Security had to come and bring order to the mass of people, and have them form a line to meet and greet Taylor Martinez.
People are insane. Not just for Nebraska football, of which they are extremely insane. However, people in general are extremely insane.
Nebraska football reasons to get EXCITED! ALL CAPS! They have QB Taylor Martinez coming back. He’s a four year starter and front-runner for the Big Ten MVP award, along with Braxton Miller. Despite his tremendously ugly throwing mechanics, he’s a true dual threat. That term “dual threat” gets thrown around way too loosely, but in his case it applies.
To read my profile and exclusive with Taylor Martinez from Big Ten Media Day go here
Tailback Ameer Abdullah is back, as is a very talented WR corps led by Kenny Bell. So the skill position players are set, and the offense will be powerful. This team will play and win a lot of games in the 30s. Bo Pelini famously said at Big Ten Media Days: “The whole SEC isn’t Alabama. There are a lot of teams in the SEC that would like to be Nebraska.” This is one time a year that Bo Pelini actually says something interesting and colorful. And he’s right, from a football stand point, Ole Miss, Vanderbilt, Kentucky, Mississippi, Mississippi St, South Carolina and Arkansas would all like to be Nebraska.
Nebraska football reasons to be worried :( Bo Pelini famously said at Big Ten Media Days: “The whole SEC isn’t Alabama. There are a lot of teams in the SEC that would like to be Nebraska.” This is the one time a year that Bo Pelini actually says something interesting and colorful. And he’s right, from a football stand point…(see above). However, he also needs to qualify with that statement. Non Alabama SEC teams like Auburn, Florida, LSU, Georgia and probably Tennessee would not want to be Nebraska. Because Nebraska football is not Nebraska football. Not lately anyway. Since playing for the 2001 National Title, they have won a couple division titles, but where are the conference championships? Where are the BCS appearances? Pelini has gotten them into three conference title games, but he’s lost all three. And his last three bowls were all losses. And there’s questions with the OL.
“Your team starts right there, you can’t be successful without a successful line,” WR Ciante Evans said at Big Ten Media Day.
And a whopping ONE returning starter in the defensive front seven. So I guess Nebraska football will just have to out-shoot teams this year.
“We want to play games in the 30s, that’s a good number for us, because we usually win games in the 30s,” said Evans.
Nebraska football key games: They should be 7-0 entering Nov 2nd vs. Northwestern, Nov 9th at Michigan Notre Dame, October 12th at Penn State, No Ohio State or Wisconsin. How can Nebraska football not go 9-3 or better?
Nebraska football bottom line: Did you see how terrible that defense was in that hideous shellacking at the hands of the Wisconsin Badgers in the Big Ten Title game? And now there’s so little experience returning! Maybe that’s a good thing- a fresh start. With a 90th ranked rush defense and 105th in turnover margin, there’s nowhere to go but up. And there is talent and experience at the CB position. However, these are no blackshirts. They are certainly not guaranteed a 10 win season and Big Ten title game appearance- but that would be the ceiling for this Nebraska football team.
the 2013 College Football rankings 1-51
Big Ten team Season Previews:
Paul M. Banks is the owner of The Sports Bank.net, a Fox Sports affiliate. He is also an analyst for 95.7 The Fan, and writes on Chicago sports media for Chicago Now. President Obama follows him on Twitter (@PaulMBanks), like him on FacebookPowered by Sidelines Follow paulmbanks