The Omaha World-Herald recently conducted an online poll which showed that most respondents would be happy with seven wins and a bowl game for Nebraska football in 2008. That caught me by surprise.
Seven wins would be an improvement over five wins, so I guess that would show progress. But seven wins? Is that acceptable at Nebraska now? Trev Alberts asked this question last summer when the expectations were much higher for 2007, and was lambasted for it.
Let's stop and think about it. The Huskers will have a new coaching staff; only Shawn Watson and Ted Gilmore return on offense. The defense was one of the worst in division 1-A football, and return the entire defensive line (rather ineffective most of the season) and half the secondary (Larry Asante and Armando Murillo). I do expect a lot of shakeups, with players moving around quite a bit, so "returning" players may be a misnomer. And while I don't think Nebraska has LSU-grade talent, I don't think they are Sun Belt conference grade talent either.
Does Nebraska's schedule look more favorable? Non-conference, the Huskers played four bowl teams in 2007, but probably only one in 2008 (Virginia Tech). Baylor replaces Texas A&M, Texas Tech replaces Oklahoma State, and Oklahoma replaces Texas. You'd like to think there's another win just from the schedule.
While I think 7 wins would represent some progress (especially if we don't see basketball scores), I'm not sure I'd be particularly pleased with it. Granted, it's still early. We don't know who is going to fill these holes, and injuries could present challenges that seven wins might actually look reasonable. (Remember 1998? Nebraska suffered so many injuries that an eight win season, while definitely sub-par, did not cause a huge uproar.)
Seven wins to me sounds like Trev was right. For some fans, expectations have been lowered.
Would you be happy with seven wins in 2008, barring no unforseen issues?
This poll is closed
Absolutely! Better than 2007, that's for sure!
Kind of. I'd hope for better.
Not really. I suppose it's an improvement and a bowl bid is good, but that's not Nebraska football as I know it.
No way. Seven wins would be a major disappointment.
Completely unacceptable. Time to call for more heads to roll.
I'm a fan of another school. I'd be happiest if Nebraska went 0-12!