Forgive me if I'm a bit gushing of the Blackshirts (I think we can once again call them that) for executing Carl Pelini's brilliant game plan that kept the Spartan offense in check for most of the day Saturday in Lincoln. They made Kirk Cousins look, well, ordinary. The Spartan offense that scored 37 points on a good Wisconsin team the week before could muster only three points in the 24-3 loss to Nebraska.
I'm not surprised at the 24 points, but was really happy to see the Blackshirts give up only 3 points Saturday. Since the fourth quarter of the Ohio State game, Nebraska has given up a total of 17 points. Not bad for a team that prior to that had been giving up 27 points a game.
Saturday's game reminded me of the '94 Colorado game when the Buffs came to Lincoln ranked 2nd in the nation and were favored to beat Nebraska that day. The Buffs had eventual Heisman winner Rashaan Salaam and future NFL quarterback Kordell Stewart that day. The Huskers came into the game a bit wounded. Tommie Frazier was unable to play and Brook Berringer was nursing a collapsed lung, but #18 played the entire game. The result? A 24-7 Husker victory that wasn't that close. It was also homecoming and Nebraska's 200th consecutive sellout. And that Husker team went on to win the first of Tom Osborne's three national championships.
Another similarity was that both the CU and MSU games were played on October 29th. (Saturday would have been my mother's 98th birthday.)
One more thing: That '94 game was the loudest I've ever heard the crowd at Memorial Stadium. Ever.
* Is there is a better running back in the country than Rex Burkhead?
* I didn't think so.
* What was impressive about Saturday's victory was that it was a MUST win for Nebraska. Lose that game, and the Huskers would have had almost no chance of playing in the Big 10 championship game. The Spartans could have punched their ticket to Indianapolis.
* It looks as if there won't be a Husker rematch with the Badgers with two conference losses. Assuming Nebraska runs the table, it will likely meet an Ohio State team that right now has what I believe is the inside track to the championship game.
* And yes, I don't like rematches either - especially for the team that won the first game.
* Minnesota's upset win over the Hawkeyes may not be the shocker everyone thinks it was. After watching the replay of the Huskers-Gophers game, I said to myself, Minnesota is going to beat a team this year that they have no business beating. The biggest problem the Gophers have had have all been self-inflicted. (The Gophers managed to gouge Nebraska for a couple of big plays.)
* Taylor Martinez will never be an NFL quarterback and he still makes Husker fans scratch their heads, but he seems to be improving each week. Gone are his 70 and 80 yard TD runs of last year, but this season's offense has many more weapons and Tim Beck seems to be dialing them up at opportune times.
* Having said that, for three of the past four games, Beck has called for TM to throw a pass with under five minutes to play in the first half. Each has been picked off and each has resulted in a score for the opponent. When is Tim Beck going to learn to run the ball and get out of the half?
* Lance Thorell may have made the biggest play in Saturday's game when he intercepted a Kirk Cousins pass that led to a first-quarter Husker touchdown. The senior walk-on DB from Loomis, Nebraska set the tone for the game and the Blackshirts never let up. Nice play, #23!
* The three points the Spartans were held to was 11 less than Nebraska gave up the week before at Minnesota.
* With the win, Nebraska controls its own destiny. Yes, there are trips to Happy Valley and the Big House and home games with Northwestern and Iowa, but there isn't a game the Huskers can't win.
* Maybe it's too early, but the Big Ten is looking flatter each week. Wisconsin is no longer the darling of the league.
* I wouldn't be surprised that at the end of the regular season, Ohio State and Nebraska might be the two teams no one else wants to play in the conference.
* Then again, I could be wrong...
* Northwestern will pose some problems for the Blackshirts, but so far, the Wildcats haven't been able to stop anyone.
* Look for a lot of points by the Huskers.
If you'd like to give me a piece of your mind, you can email me at: HuskerDan@cox.net