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J U S T I N   P R E S T I D G E
Nov. 24, 2009

This Just-In...

Blackshirts take the money out of "Banks," send Wildcats home for the holidays.
Huskers "get ’er done" 17-3.

Player(s) of the Game: Blackshirts; 294 yds, 2 Turnovers, (3-14) 3rd down conv, 3 pts

"Hey Asante! Get your head in the game!…

Im pretty sure that the coaching staff had similar sentiments given some of the borderline plays he has made in the last few weeks. They say a person has to hear new information at least three times before it registers in their mind for immediate recollection. Give credit to Asante for taking his coaching literally. Using a technique that only the most seasoned WWF (or is it WWA now?) wrestler could love; Asante put his cranium to good use forcing a fumble and thwarting a KSU drive early in the third quarter. Hulk Hogan would be proud. Overall Asante ended up +2 for the day-and he didnt even have to use a mulligan.

Not to be lost was the play by the rest of the defense. The old adage "bend but dont break" was on display Saturday, but the elastic never broke. We tend to forget this is Pelini grade elastic-tested against Mangino and proven effective.

Suh had another dominant game, shucking offensive linemen like an ear of corn and generally wreaking havoc, in what has become just another day at the office for him. There must be some way to get him another year of eligibility. Maybe they can get the NCAA to grant him a sixth year due to a "coaching hardship".

Feeling lucky after watching a hard earned victory on Saturday, I called and left a voice mail at the NCAA headquarters regarding this inquiry. To my surprise, I found a message left on my phone the following morning answering my question. The response was eerily familiar "No, get your head in the game". Huh, thats twice weve heard that. Hopefully Ill remember next time…

With no Green in sight, Offense is consistent-Lee mediocre

But we will take it! Any improvement over terrible is a positive sign. To be sure, Zac tried to keep K-State in the game at times, throwing an ill advised interception shortly after an ill advised sack, to erase at least a field goal attempt. His option runs leave something to be desired as well. Maybe he could take some advice from Kenny Rodgers. You gotta know when to hold ’em, know when to pitch ’em, know when to run…well thats not exactly how it goes but you get the point.

Im not really sure why they continue to run the option with Lee, other than to give the defense someone else to key on besides Helu. The problem is they dont care. In fact, one could say that they want him to run it. Sure he did ok last week but he picked up most of his yards off of a busted pass play. I dont think he has gained more than five or six yards off of the option, and more often, he gets thrown for a loss.

The bottom line is that by running the ball it has shortened the game, thus giving us the best chance to win. Niles has turned into a nice wingback…err…wide receiver for us over the last few games, and the offensive line has closed out the last two games old school style. It was good to see Burkhead back in the mix. His north-south running style will do even better with the revamped offensive scheme. Watson and Co. have done a good job in finding a way to make this offense serviceable. Right now, with this defense, serviceable is good enough to win the Big 12 North. Winning the Big 12 Championship…well we are still working on that.

"Signed, Sealed and Delivered"

So here we are Pelini has won an all expense paid trip to Jerry Land. The road to get here was hard, the left turn at Iowa State and Texas Tech come to mind, but the main goal at the beginning of the season has been accomplished-winning the North. Much more was accomplished however. This team (and coaches) learned how to adapt, and overcome adversity. Nebraska looks to gain more exposure to the talent laden Texas recruit pool, as well as getting the opportunity to play in the home of the Dallas Cowboys.

Our Huskers will be in line to sing "The Payback (Song)" to Texas for their upset win in 96 and ruin the Longhorns shot at another National Championship. No, we dont have a QB named after a famous singer, but he is the son of a former NFL QB, even if it doesnt seem like it at times. It would be fitting to hear the team, Led by Zac Lee singing "I feel good da da da da da dah dah…" after converting a 4th and 1 to seal the game. If only James Brown could be there… (the Godfather of Soul of course, not the former Texas QB).

In Conclusion…

The game played out like most of the others this season. Anemic offense, stout defense and solid special teams. The defense will not get much rest having to turn around and go up against Buffs on Friday. Colorado will be coming in with a 3-8 record but it will not matter. We always get their best shot-this is their bowl game. In a game that really doesnt mean a lot in the grand scheme of things outside of Nebraska, it will be interesting to see how our Huskers respond. I expect that the coaches will substitute liberally and we may even see Green get in the game. With the pressure off, who knows, maybe this offense will hang 40 points on them.

Regardless of the result, Bo and his staff should be commended for righting the ship and refocusing this team when it appeared that the season could be lost. Three more games remain. The Huskers have passed the test and are now on to the bonus questions. Does Bo have all the answers? Take the advice from Meatloaf…"Two out of three ain't bad".


Justin Prestidge is a new contributor to this website. Born and raised in Scottsbluff, Justin is currently holding a low profile deep in the heart of Texas. A die hard Husker fan, Justin has been following Big Red Football for over 20 years, and has been a member of the North Texas Nebraskans for the last 10. You can e-mail him here.