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  • Quack Attack 2016, & Husker-Tigers on January 1, anyone?

    Oregon has figured out how to build the best resume to make into the college football playoff: schedule a home-and-home series against a consistently ranked team that never wins big games.

    I'm sorry Husker fans, it's true.

    With SEC teams canceling future series against major conference opponents left and right (Alabama-Georgia Tech, South Carolina-Georgia Tech, Alabama-Michigan State), Nebraska was lucky not only to keep Tennessee in the long-term future, but to get three years notice from the Volunteers when they wanted to postpone their series with Nebraska in order to play Virginia Tech at Bristol Motor Speedway. Just look at the ACC late last year when they told their members they would be only be playing eight conference games in 2013 instead of the planned nine. Big props to Tennessee.

    While a lot could change in three years (Bo Pelini could leave Nebraska, we don't know how good Mark Helfrich will be), Nebraska finally has a national power coming to Lincoln. Oregon was very close to what Nebraska was at its peak -- a smaller state university with an unique run-based offense. Nebraska hasn't announced a series to this much fanfare in a while, and with a possible top 10 Miami coming to Lincoln next year, Nebraska could have two premier home games two years apart.

    Sep 21, 2013; Bloomington, IN, USA; Missouri Tigers defensive lineman Michael Sam (52) reacts after the game at Memorial Stadium. Missouri defeats Indiana 45-28. Mandatory Credit: Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports
    Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports
    The only question is, would Nebraska have been better off stocking its schedule with a 2-for-1, or 3-for-1 series with a competent mid-major like UCF or San Diego State? Possibly, because there are no recruiting reasons to play in Oregon. But bottom line, if you can get a consistent top 10 program on your schedule, there's little to fault in taking it with no questions asked, even if you are just bolstering their strength of schedule.

    After Missouri beat Georgia on Saturday, I got to thinking: what are the chances that Missouri could be matched against Nebraska in a bowl game, since the SEC and Big 10 tie into three bowls? With fewer regional games for both schools and Big 10 fatigue setting in for Nebraska, a Huskers-Tigers bowl could energize fans and foster strong message board fodder.

    Missouri, right now 6-0, likely won't finish below 8-4. (If you doubt me, check their schedule. All their tough games are at home, and both of their road games are winnable). Assuming the SEC has two BCS teams, the Capital One Bowl will get the conference's third selection, the Outback Bowl the fifth selection, and the Taxslayer.com Gator Bowl the seventh, so the Tigers could be in play for all of those slots. The Big 10's first three selections go to those three bowls in their respective order, and Nebraska will more than likely finish in the top three in Big 10. Any bowl won't pick Northwestern over Nebraska if the teams have equal records, and there's a reasonable chance Wisconsin or another Big 10 team will make the BCS besides Ohio State, all helping Nebraska's chances.

    A Nebraska-Missouri season-capper would fold out with the all the symmetry of a Philip K. Dick short story, since they still have the same coaches and much of the same culture from their last game three years ago. Nebraska could very well be starting the same quarterback they did in that last meeting, and a couple of other freshmen from that 2010 game could be on the field, like Ciante Evans for Nebraska and Henry Josey for Missouri. If a Missouri player, coach, or booster publicly plays the “this-is-our-chance-to-make-the-Big-10-sorry” card, it's game on. Come on Jay Nixon, you got it in you.

    But of course, the main hurdle to this old Big 8 rematch is that their fans don't travel as well to Florida. Missouri's fans might be energized for their first bowl trip in a year, but Nebraska could get passed on if they are sitting in a bunch with Michigan, Michigan State, and/or Wisconsin, who has to be high on the Capital One Bowl's list after three straight years in the Rose Bowl. The three Florida bowls would probably all feel a need to match Nebraska and Missouri next to a sure draw like Auburn or Michigan, so if Nebraska and Missouri did play, it would probably be in a bowl that had no choice but to take both teams, most likely the Gator Bowl.

    No matter, though. Missouri may be high enough they could end up in the Cotton Bowl, and Nebraska could fall to the Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl. Both of those tie into the Big 12.
    Comments 7 Comments
    1. Unregistered's Avatar
      Unregistered -
      70, 71, 94, 94, 95..... Yeah the huskers never win big games.......
    1. SoCalRed's Avatar
      SoCalRed -
      Mr. Johnson, you are the most consistently negative reporter of the Nebraska program I have ever read.

      1. You have no one iota of an idea what shape this program is going to be in come 2016, but you have decided that Oregon will be better, no matter what.

      2. You agenda against Bo Pelini is finally as clear as a bell.

      3. It's now clear that you hate the B1G almost as much as you hate Pelini.

      This will be the last time I will read anymore of your vitriol-loaded dreck.
    1. nems's Avatar
      nems -
      This is truly some awful commentary. Easily one of the worst diatribes I have ever read.

      Well, at least we finally found someone that writes worse than the local Husker beat writers.
    1. cthusker's Avatar
      cthusker -
      This is pure blather........... nothing more! NO ONE knows what condition these respective programs will be in 2016! Anyone claiming to know is either a liar or living in fantasy land... Programs have HUGE swings as evidenced by the rankings every year... This article is a pure hyperbole nothing more...........
    1. Unregistered's Avatar
      Unregistered -
      This actually seemed like a very well written article. He's only dealing with the facts he is given, mostly that we haven't won any big games lately, and even points out that it is a while in the future, so we can't know where the programs will be. Older Nebraska fans have become downright pathetic, we aren't a great football team at the moment, get used to it. Keeping a level head, with reasonable expectations is always the safest course of action. If you want something that says we'll win ten straight titles, pass around whatever pipe you have, I'd like a hit.
    1. AnchorageHusker's Avatar
      AnchorageHusker -
      I don't know if it's hyperbole, or dreck, or anything else. But he's right about our national perception. We are perceived as a consistently ranked team who folds in big games. It's just true, I also think scheduling Oregon was a no brained, you take that game all day long.

      Some people are way too emotional when they read any thing even remotely critical towards the program.

      As for the Missouri deal, I'm still hoping to see Nebraska WIN the B1G. Besides, a game against Mizzou will never be any prize to me.
    1. Unregistered's Avatar
      Unregistered -
      Anchorage...
      I'd LOVE to see us beat Punkell in a bowl. That scheming ******... I have nothing but abhorration for he and his ways of recruiting. If we weren't to be victors, bring on Any other team.
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