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The three things a team needs to win and where I’m at with it

Nightman Cometh

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1) Quarterback – Cautiously optimistic

It’s hard to say who will start, but it seems like Rhule is taking a long look at offenses that have worked at Nebraska in the past, which means more qb run game. Is that Simms? Is that Haarberg? I don’t know but worst-case scenario Thompson starts and he’s not bad.

2) Offensive Line – Doubtful

Maybe with the addition of Scott, Nouili back from suspension and a healthy Prochazka the O-line looks different. But I am highly skeptical. They have been terrible.

3) Defensive playmakers – I’ll believe it when I see it

Reimer and Henrich are solid players who should have a big season. But I don’t know if there is a Mike Brown, Lavonte David or even a Jojo Doman on this team. Is there a guy who can bail the defense out consistently? I don’t think so.

I’m not saying this team won’t win games but I think they’ll have to be a well-coached, mistake-free team to compete for the west division. 6-6 sounds about right.
 

1) Quarterback – Cautiously optimistic

It’s hard to say who will start, but it seems like Rhule is taking a long look at offenses that have worked at Nebraska in the past, which means more qb run game. Is that Simms? Is that Haarberg? I don’t know but worst-case scenario Thompson starts and he’s not bad.

2) Offensive Line – Doubtful

Maybe with the addition of Scott, Nouili back from suspension and a healthy Prochazka the O-line looks different. But I am highly skeptical. They have been terrible.

3) Defensive playmakers – I’ll believe it when I see it

Reimer and Henrich are solid players who should have a big season. But I don’t know if there is a Mike Brown, Lavonte David or even a Jojo Doman on this team. Is there a guy who can bail the defense out consistently? I don’t think so.

I’m not saying this team won’t win games but I think they’ll have to be a well-coached, mistake-free team to compete for the west division. 6-6 sounds about right.
Good post overall. Where I disagree is the Oline. As the season moved on last year the line was trending better. It was tougher to see as our season was much tougher the second half than first. Also our Qbs were beat up from the first half. So IA was where we really saw it start to come together. If we tick up a bit more by the beginning of the season and continue throughout the year change could be dramatic compared to last year.

The rest of the O is already there. The Qbs just need 1-2 more seconds.
 



We've seen Nebraska fight through these disadvantages to be a play or two away from winning a lot of conference games over the past few years. While the 3 elements listed are all important, I think Rhule's coaching will be more mentally fit for the Big 10. He's not going to make bone-headed calls. I think the team is going to get a couple more first downs, improve field position average a bit, prolong possession time a bit, let the Defense rest a bit more. Its little cumulative things like that which are going to be the difference between being a winning team in conference this season, and I think those can be subtle improvements which aren't flashy answers. I see that as Rhule's winning formula. Simply coaching his team better on game day, after excellent preparation.
 
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We've seen Nebraska fight through these advantages to be a play or two away from winning a lot of conference games over the past few years. While the 3 elements listed are all important, I think Rhule's coaching will be more mentally fit for the Big 10. He's not going to make bone-headed calls. I think the team is going to get a couple more first downs, improve field position average a bit, prolong possession time a bit, let the Defense rest a bit more. Its little cumulative things like that which are going to be the difference between being a winning team in conference this season, and I think those can be subtle improvements which aren't flashy answers. I see that as Rhule's winning formula. Simply coaching his team better on game day, after excellent preparation.

Easy to say that now (the bolded). Let's see if people still hold that sentiment in October. Even the great TO made "bone-headed calls" (according to some of the greatest fans in college FB).


;)
 
Easy to say that now (the bolded). Let's see if people still hold that sentiment in October. Even the great TO made "bone-headed calls" (according to some of the greatest fans in college FB).


;)
Bone-headed calls are things you do to yourself. Making a call that doesn't work out is not a bone-headed call. I can't think of too many examples where a Tom Osborne coached team beat itself. That's what I expect from Rhule. For example, he's not going to be in control of a game up by 2 scores, and inexplicably give breath to the opponent by giving them the opportunity to recover an onside kick rather than making the opponent have to drive the length of the field against my defense who was playing well. The risk-reward ratio doesn't justify it.

There are several examples of good Big 10 coaches like Bielsema and Fitzgerald who will let their less-talented team hang around by making patient decisions and playing for a chance to win the game in the 4th quarter, rather than trying to get a knock out punch earlier. I totally see Rhule as cut from that cloth.
 




Bone-headed calls are things you do to yourself. Making a call that doesn't work out is not a bone-headed call. I can't think of too many examples where a Tom Osborne coached team beat itself. That's what I expect from Rhule. For example, he's not going to be in control of a game up by 2 scores, and inexplicably give breath to the opponent by giving them the opportunity to recover an onside kick rather than making the opponent have to drive the length of the field against my defense who was playing well. The risk-reward ratio doesn't justify it.

There are several examples of good Big 10 coaches like Bielsema and Fitzgerald who will let their less-talented team hang around by making patient decisions and playing for a chance to win the game in the 4th quarter, rather than trying to get a knock out punch earlier. I totally see Rhule as cut from that cloth.
Curious how old you are? I ask because early on in TO career the complaint was that his teams beat themselves. That is literally where "Sooner Magic" came.from. start at 1974 and go look at all our losses till like 82 and you will see a history of late turnovers.
 
1) Quarterback – Cautiously optimistic

It’s hard to say who will start, but it seems like Rhule is taking a long look at offenses that have worked at Nebraska in the past, which means more qb run game. Is that Simms? Is that Haarberg? I don’t know but worst-case scenario Thompson starts and he’s not bad.

2) Offensive Line – Doubtful

Maybe with the addition of Scott, Nouili back from suspension and a healthy Prochazka the O-line looks different. But I am highly skeptical. They have been terrible.

3) Defensive playmakers – I’ll believe it when I see it

Reimer and Henrich are solid players who should have a big season. But I don’t know if there is a Mike Brown, Lavonte David or even a Jojo Doman on this team. Is there a guy who can bail the defense out consistently? I don’t think so.

I’m not saying this team won’t win games but I think they’ll have to be a well-coached, mistake-free team to compete for the west division. 6-6 sounds about right.

I think you're right on the QB. We've got enough pieces there to be fairly confident that we'll see at least competent play at the position. Like the rest of the game, the position isn't a stand alone and relies on others, but I like where we're starting.

You mentioned the three names I'm most excited to see on the field at the same time in Scott, Nouili and Prochazka. Lutovsky gets a lot of love, but Piper was really starting to show some improved play last year. Graded out higher than the other two guards as well. I think there's something there in our starting five, but proven depth just doesn't exist at this point.

Reimer will likely be the guy with his nose in it most of the time, but I don't really know how White's going to use the pieces we have to say we do or don't have 'That guy' on the roster currently. We have a bunch of long, quick, athletic players who could easily make an impact this fall if they step up. I'm more concerned at this point with how long it takes the defensive group to play with confidence in the new system. We saw how quickly Busch changed things up for the better last fall, so I'm hopeful White can produce pretty quickly. They typically say defense is ahead of offense at the start of a new year, so hopefully that will be accelerated this fall and they'll hit the ground running.

To your last point, if we don't make the mistakes that have swung so many close games the last four or five years, 6-6 is definitely attainable. How quickly do those tendencies disappear? I think part of the purge already happened last fall when Mickey and Busch started to change the culture. That will certainly help this staff this year.
 
As “BO” used to say… “if we can just fix us, we should be ok”. Meaning…. Being at least breakeven on turnovers, limiting the drive killing penalties, bad clock mgmt, bad coaching decisions, 3rd n six+ yards….then we have a very realistic shot at 7-8 wins.

From what I can tell, these seem to be the kinds of things Rhule emphasizes.

He doesn't seem like the kind of coach who lets a play clock expire on him, or calls some fancypants play action pass when it's 4th and Goal on the 2 yard line. The record this fall will ultimately tell the tale, but I tend to agree that if we can limit the self-inflicted wounds we have a realistic shot at something like 6-8 wins.
 
It’s hard to tell on 2 and 3 since our turnover is about 50%. I wouldn’t base any assessments on last year either good or bad
Our turnover on the offensive line has not been 50%. In fact we return more experience on the O-line than anyone in the Big Ten West (and maybe the whole B1G).

Plus the guys we lost are not extremely note worthy guys - I’m very pessimistic on Hixon … I felt he was our worst linemen based on his needing help from guards to block any NT … one-on-one he could not block any B1G nose tackle. Besides him we've lost Broc Bando and Brant Banks ... two backups!

Bad take IMO.
 



1) Quarterback – Cautiously optimistic

It’s hard to say who will start, but it seems like Rhule is taking a long look at offenses that have worked at Nebraska in the past, which means more qb run game. Is that Simms? Is that Haarberg? I don’t know but worst-case scenario Thompson starts and he’s not bad.

2) Offensive Line – Doubtful

Maybe with the addition of Scott, Nouili back from suspension and a healthy Prochazka the O-line looks different. But I am highly skeptical. They have been terrible.

3) Defensive playmakers – I’ll believe it when I see it

Reimer and Henrich are solid players who should have a big season. But I don’t know if there is a Mike Brown, Lavonte David or even a Jojo Doman on this team. Is there a guy who can bail the defense out consistently? I don’t think so.

I’m not saying this team won’t win games but I think they’ll have to be a well-coached, mistake-free team to compete for the west division. 6-6 sounds about right.
Good post overall. Where I disagree is the Oline. As the season moved on last year the line was trending better. It was tougher to see as our season was much tougher the second half than first. Also our Qbs were beat up from the first half. So IA was where we really saw it start to come together. If we tick up a bit more by the beginning of the season and continue throughout the year change could be dramatic compared to last year.

The rest of the O is already there. The Qbs just need 1-2 more seconds.
I agree with Thom ... O-Line will be markedly improved. S&C was a big problem with previous iterations of the O-Line, last year meshing kids recruited for an RPO style offense with a coordinator who was exclusively WCO ... was a bad call for the O-Line.

We graduate arguably our worst linemen in Hixon, return a suspended linemen who could be argued was our best linemen the year before, add a very coveted lineman from ASU through the portal (at arguably the most important spot on the line), have continuity in coaching with Raoila and return a group of linemen who lead the Big West in most experienced (most starts). Benhart has been lauded by Rhule as someone who has improved greatly with his S&C team!

We will have a play caller who will be in sync with the strengths of the team rather than force feeding a play style that is not conducive with the talent on the field.
 

Our turnover on the offensive line has not been 50%. In fact we return more experience on the O-line than anyone in the Big Ten West (and maybe the whole B1G).

Plus the guys we lost are not extremely note worthy guys - I’m very pessimistic on Hixon … I felt he was our worst linemen based on his needing help from guards to block any NT … one-on-one he could not block any B1G nose tackle. Besides him we've lost Broc Bando and Brant Banks ... two backups!

Bad take IMO.
Actually it has been 50%. Unless what I'm reding is wrong. https://www.on3.com/teams/nebraska-...aska-football-scholarship-distribution-chart/ We have 14 offensive lineman on scholarship and 7 of them are new.
I'm not going under the assumption that the returning starters are automatically our starters this year. So if you think its a bad take based on the new facts than that's fine.
 

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