Saturday, September 22, 2007

It's Evening in Nebraska

In 1984, Ronald Reagan once ended a Presidential Debate by asking if you were better off now than you were four years before. I was reminded of this question a couple of times last week, once over at BigRedNetwork and again on during afternoon sports talk radio. Today's 41-40 comeback win over Ball State only stengthen's my opinion.

Believe it or not, the Huskers are not a better football team than they were four years ago.

The instinctive reaction is to point to the Husker offense. Look over the offense, and yes, Nebraska is better. Quarterback Sam Keller is better, especially in this system. Wide receivers definitely are better. Last week, I thought that we were better at tight end with a pre-injury Matt Herian, but I'm not so sure after today's performance by Sean Hill. I think Cody Ross is a better running back than Marlon Lucky, but we have more, better depth. I think the offensive line might be a little better. So yes, the Huskers are better on offense.

Defense is now a whole another issue. Last week's defensive meltdown can be explained in part by the opponent. USC is a very talented team. This week's meltdown against a middle-of-the-road MAC team can't be explained. Yes, we were missing a few key defenders today. That doesn't explain over 600 yards. That doesn't explain the lack of physical play. That doesn't explain looking slower than a MAC school.

That's right...a MAC team has better defensive football players than the Nebraska Cornhuskers.

That a sobering thought...especially on a night when a lot of Husker fans are probably drinking heavily to forget what they saw today.

In fairness, there are a lot of games left this season, and plenty of opportunity to regroup. Plenty of opportunities to sway my opinion. I'd sure like to believe that we've got some playmakers on defense. But right now, I don't see them.


Anonymous said...

I'm sure they practiced their arm tackling all week, but it doesn't look like they improved much.

MAC Daddy said...

Oh it's gonna be a long painful season to be a Husker fan.

Anonymous said...

Coach Callahan took over a 10-3 team and installed his West Coast Offense. To date - I feel like mediocrity has set in at NU. I do not think he is the guy to move this program forward. I see penalties, poor special teams, poor defense and an adequate offense. I can't stand to listen to him after games - He just doesn't "get" How Husker football should be played. It should be played with lights out - Offense, Defense, and special teams!

Anonymous said...

I have to disagree with the Callahan comment. In time the offense will recruit better players due to easier transition to the NFL...on offense. If the defense continues in its present state then recruitment across the board will fail and the HUSKERS will become a distant memory. Step 1. Remove all blackshirts..being a started doesn't make you a blackshirt. Step 2. Hire a defensive coordinator. Step 3. Find a lineman who can move. Step 4. Find linebackers that take on a block..not side step. Step 5. Hire a scenodary coach.

Anonymous said...

I'm just waiting for Husker Mike's Big XII Power Poll. Blackskirts can't be in the top 5.

And plese drop KU until they play someone that doesn't end in "School of the blind", "A&T", or "International".