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Series Preview: Rice Invitational

Nebraska comes into the second weekend of the season having already uncovered a quality 4th starter (Matt Foust), a third-baseman who can hit (Craig Corriston), and a closer that can get out of jams (Erik Bird). Tony Watson and Johnny Dorn pitched as well we'd hoped, while Charlie Shirek has shown good potential. The Huskers were rusty on defense, as should be expected after spending 39-of-39 practices indoors, but should be ready to go by Friday. There should be fewer than eight errors this weekend.

Here's a quick overview of the teams that the Huskers will be taking on in Houston. I'll have in-depth previews of each team on the morning that the Huskers are slated to play them, with recaps to follow.


Friday, 1 p.m. - Nebraska vs. Texas A&M-Corpus Christi

Projected Starters
Nebraska - Tony Watson (1-0, 1.50 ERA)
TA&M-CC - Will Norman (2-0, 4.58 ERA)

TA&M-CC is 9-1 on the season so far, with the only loss coming in a very close game last week against Texas-Pan American. The Islanders have a very good offense, and have scored 112 runs in 10 games this season.


Saturday, 1 p.m. - Nebraska vs. No. 4 Rice

Projected Starters
Nebraska - Charlie Shirek (1-0, 5.06 ERA)
Rice - Ryan Berry (2-0, 1.08 ERA)

Rice was the consensus No. 1 team in the country for the entire offseason before losing early to Texas State. The Owls then suffered losses to No. 1 Vanderbilt, No. 24 Texas A&M and No. 20 Long Beach State. They recovered to win their last three games and improve to 6-4, but they've started slow this season, as is their habit. The much heralded SP/1B Joe Savery is living up to the hype so far as a pitcher, with a 0.90 ERA, but he's hitting only 6-for-35 (.171) on the offensive side.


Sunday, 12 p.m. - Nebraska vs. No. 27 Florida Atlantic

Projected Starters
Nebraska - Johnny Dorn (0-1, 1.80 ERA)
Florida Atlantic - Mike Obradovich (3-0, 6.00 ERA)

FAU is undefeated so far, going 9-0 to open their season. The biggest win for the FAU Owls was a 9-6 victory over Oklahoma State last week. FAU has another powerful offense, racking up 118 runs in nine games, including a 33-3 massacre of Mississippi Valley State. The Owls have only scored less than eight runs once this season, while their pitching staff has allowed three runs or less in four games.