Friday, September 30, 2011

It's Finally Here: Nebraska in the Big Ten

Tomorrow night, Nebraska's move to the Big Ten becomes reality as the Huskers take the field at Camp Randall. Sure, we celebrated the move last year and on July 1st, and laughed as the Big XII imploded over the last few weeks.  BTN has televised a couple of Husker football games, and Nebraska's volleyball and soccer teams have played conference games.

But now it's real.  The days of playing Kansas State and Missouri are over.  Now it's Wisconsin, Minnesota, and Michigan.  All the anticipation reaches a crescendo tomorrow night in Madison, Wisconsin.  Seemingly tens of thousands of Husker fans will be in the area...perhaps has many as 40,000 in the area, and maybe 20,000 in the stadium.  It's a historical moment and many people just want to be a part of it.  ESPN GameDay will start things off as the sun rises, and ABC's primetime telecast will take us well past sunset.

What do I expect? Heck if I know. Nebraska has been inconsistent this season.  Wisconsin hasn't played anybody.  The Nebraska team that emerged from halftime against Washington will win this game... easily.  The Nebraska team that played the first half of the Fresno State game probably gets blown out.  I've ran through every scenario in my mind:  blowout win, blowout loss, close game.  Taylor Martinez taking the nation by storm with a performance like he had on the road last year against Washington, Oklahoma State, and Kansas State. Or Martinez melting down like he did late in the Big XII championship game.

I've been asked time and time again what my prediction is.  My mind doesn't compute this one.  Too many variables, too many possibilities.  So I've taken the approach that it's a historic game, and needs a historic score.  And I look back towards some of those classic matchups between Nebraska and Oklahoma, two Big Reds in the 70's.  35-31 perhaps?  Maybe.  But I'm going back to my first Nebraska-Oklahoma game in 1978.  John Ruud decapitating Kelly Phelps.  Billy Sims fumbling on the three yard line.

Nebraska wins 17-14.  And that works for me.  Badgers?  We don't need  no steeenking Badgers.


mydoglily said...

Let me help you out with your scenarios. First of all, there will be no NU blowout victory. Wisconsin has lost just 4 games at Camp Randall in the last 8 years, coupled with ESPN Gameday and a primetime ABC audience, ZERO chance that Wisconsin gets blown out. Secondly, this is Bielema's most talented team, arguably the most talented football team in Wisconsin history according to many (including Bielema). Can Nebraska say the same for their team? No they can't, and no they can't win this game, will not happen. So the only real debate is whether NU gets blown out, something that is typically driven by quarterback play and turnovers. Ahem, Martinez, on the road, big game?

It should be more clear Huskers. Enjoy the atmosphere, grab some brats, maybe some cheese because this game is all Wisconsin, 42-13.

Husker Mike said...

Using "most talented team in history" as a reason that Wisconsin will blow out Nebraska is probably the most inane reasoning.. First, past history is irrelevant in determing what will will happen tonight. Secondly, you have just proven just how little you know about college football. There is a huge difference between Nebraska's best teams ever and Wisconsin's. Might want to look into that.

mydoglily said...

So the recent "past history" of an inconsistent quarterback running an inconsistent offense is irrelevant in handicapping this game? And why does Vegas have the Badgers a 10 point favorite? I am guessing that they have analyzed the recent history of both teams, current size, speed, coaching, etc...all tilt in favor of Wisconsin.

But the real difference will be the intangibles.. For years the Big 10 has listened to nonsense from the likes of Husker Fans, weak conference, boring football, etc... Wisconsin will be playing for many different fans and teams this evening, they are across the board a better football team, and they have a coach that will have the hammer down on every play. It's just not a good spot for your team.

Husker Mike said...

We'll see whether you are right...or just another clueless Wisconsin fan.

mydoglily said...

For the record, I'm not a Wiaconsin or Big 10 fan, just a college football enthusiast. I enjoy your Twitter.