The goal for every conference weekend series is to win it. When you play a team like Michigan State, you probably need to sweep, but asking for that in baseball is a tall task. Being in a football state, it always frustrates me when you drop a game you shouldn't here and there how we go "football" and talk about it being the end of the world. Even after we lost to Sam Houston State (Currently 35th in RPI and 15-6) we had people pointing to it as a reason we need to move on from Erstad. You can't be that emotional or "up and down" in baseball. However, to win conference, you probably need to get a couple sweeps during the season (that was our first sweep since Rutgers in 2017, when we won conference). Anyway, here's what's coming up and what i'm looking forward to: -Creighton in the mid-week game who is coming off a sweep of Maryland. They are currently ranked 42nd in RPI with an 11-5 record. -Will be interesting to see what we do with this mid-week lineup. I expect Kyle Perry to start, who had an unbelievable last outing, but he is a bit "up and down" for me. Would like to see him have another solid outing to gain some more confidence. Staying with the lineup, a lot of times mid-week we "mix things up" and give some guys with less at bats a chance. We will see what we do. -We head to Minneapolis for a weekend series against Minnesota who, like Creighton, is coming off a sweep of their own as they took 3 games from Penn State. Despite being 8-13, they are 55th in RPI. Like Nebraska (and any other B1G team for that matter), they went and played tough competition without being able to practice outside, so their record is a bit skewed. They had games against Oregon State, NC State, Gonzaga, and Dallas Baptist. So don't let the record fool you. -Speaking of RPI... Nebraska fell from 22nd to 41st with their weekend sweep of Sparty. Proving even more it's probably better to go play a four game series against Oregon State and go 0-4 than it is to play a 3 game series against a team you should sweep. Weird, but understandable. -What is Erstad going to do with Altavilla and Roskam? They will get this weekend again to try and hit out of their early slow starts. Altavilla and Roskam are from Minnesota, and with a mid-week game and heading back to their old stomping grounds, no better time to let Schwellenbach get one more weekend of rest and let those seniors try to work some kinks out. But if something doesn't change, if you have to sit Chick (.295), Henwood (.294), Hallmark (.273), Gomes (.263), or Hellstrom (.263) so that you can keep your seniors Altavilla (.200) or Roskam (.210) in the lineup, that's not fun. I understand senior leadership and some of the intangibles. Right now i'm hoping Erstad sees them hit themselves out of it as he doesn't want to have to make that decision. I'm not sure what DE will do, it feels to me like a poker hand you got out river'd and have invested too much into it to let it go. We will see. -How about the youth movement tho? How does this lineup look? SS Fr Schwellenbach (.328) LF JR Hagge (.314) RF So Palensky (.324) 1B Fr Gomes (.263) CF Jr Acker (.356) 3B Fr Chick (.295) 2B Sr Henwood (.294) C So Hellstrom (.263) DH So Cross (.318) Not too bad, and that's before you look at Altavilla or Roskam hitting out of their struggles. -Waldron and Fisher have solidified themselves for pitching Friday's and Saturday's. They've allowed us to keep the mileage on the arms down of our bullpen and get guys like Tyler Martin and Bo Blessie another week to get ready. Luensmann wasn't needed at all this weekend, so hopefully the cut on his thumb is healing. -Really stinks to see Tillotson struggle after his arm injury. He just hasn't been the same. -We are yet to see Blessie (drafted 36th round out of high school), Kissack, or Schreiber. So we have a few more guys we can add to the arsenal. EDIT: Schreiber came in and was shut down for a bit. He will be back. -Need to hope for 3-1 this weekend. A series win is always the goal, but Minnesota will be tough as they were picked preseason to win the conference. Hopefully we can find a way to beat Creighton midweek as well. If we lose to Creighton but still go 2-1 against Minnesota, I can handle that.